Skip to main content

Full text of "Strange incidents in Mexico, Hawaii, and the United States"

See other formats

Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2012 with funding from 

LYRASIS Members and Sloan Foundation 


Strange Incidents 

In Mexico, Hawaii, and the 
United States. 

H y Doctor John Hunter 

La Feria, Texas. 

Copyright Applied For. 

All Rights Reserved 

Strange Incidents 

In Mexico, Hawaii, and the 
United States. 

-T ( ^\ 

By Doctor John Hunter 

La Fern, Texas. 

Copyright Applied For. 


R01B51 243A2 

All Rights Reserved 


Incident Page 

1. Prefatory 1 

2. A Costly Mule 3 

3. In a Catacomb of Kings 6 

4. A Joke on a Man in Love 9 

5. A Bear Hunt 11 

6. The Haunted House of Hawaii 13 

7. Talpa, A Sacred Shrine in Mexico 16 

8. A Buffalo Hunt 21 

9. A Runaway Horse 22 

10. Asleep On a Coffin 23 

11. In a Robbers' Hut 24 

12. In a Dissecting Room 28 

13. The Horse Laughed 30 

14. At the Crater of Mauna Loa 33 

15. A Kangaroo Court 36 

16. The Doings of Spooks 39 

17. Dr. John Hunter as a Minister 41 

18. A Moon-Eyed HorseAliLpL^.^ 45 

19. Surgery in the •t)ar£---l__J-V.J_!l_:.*^jL 46 

20. Marooned.%_-:__ _*_ 49 

21. A Brush WitVfo^iai^ .-..^.^v--V~ --« 51 

22. A Sacrificial Cfreh£l„L'^l-- m X^^—- 53 

23. Courting in a Fish Pond 55 

24. Kilauea — Asleep in a Crater 57 

25. A Joker Punished . 61 

26. In An Earthquake Crack 62 

27. In a Texas Cave 65 

28. A Timid Groom 67 

29. The Hawaiian. The Missionary 70 

30. The Pathfinder . 74 

31. Hunting in Trees 76 

32. A Fishing Party • 77 

33. A Storm at Sea. On the Yaqui River 78 

34. Intimacy With a Ram . 84 

35. Mexican Priests 85 

36. A Mozo. A Case in Court 91 

37. An Hawaiian Rain God 94 

38. Medicine in the Mexican Sierras 95 

39. A Stage Robbery 99 

40. Revolutionary Robbers 101 

41. Dynamite 104 

42. Looking Into Mauser Rifles 105 

43. Rescuing a Mine Manager . 106 

44. A Suggestive Note 108 

45. An Eventful Night 110 

46. Things Are Not What They Seem 112 

47. Poisoned While Crossing the Mexican Sierras 114 

48. Farm Food and Filth 118 

49. Mexican Bailes or Balls 121 

50. Social Conditions in Mexico 1 124 

51. The Vera Cruz Episode. New York to Texas. 128 

52. Mexican Opinion 132 

53. Major in the Mexican Army , 134 

54. A Visit to a "Chiro" 139 

55. At a Doctors' Banquet in the Rio Grande Valley 141 

Please do r 

book or turn down tie p£ 



Many times I have related to friends the experiences of 
my nomadic career, and invariably they have insisted that 
my stories be published in book form. While such was 
never contemplated, I am yielding to the oft-repeated re- 

It is not necessary to state further concerning my origin 
than that I sprang into existence through old Eve's gener- 
osity in dividing her apple with Adam. Had she not mani- 
fested her unselfish passion these incidents would never 
have been penned, because old Adam would yet be a bliss- 
fully ignorant celibate basking in the shadows of Eden 
eating strawberries. 

Hearsay evidence is not admitted in a court room, and 
is not dependable under other circumstances; however, it 
is not a questionable assertion to say that I was born some- 
where at some time, but whatever else I might say regard- 
ing the event would be but hearsay because it is certain 
I have no personal recollection of the affair. 

I have been frequent told that my old negro nurse said 
at the time of my birth, "Dat chile sure is born under de 
onlucky star," and whether it was believed then or not, time 
and facts have taught me to respect her as a creature whose 
name should be enrolled among those of the great astrono- 

Since my earliest recollections of youthful days on the 
Brazos River in Washington County, Texas, there has never 
been a year during which I did not incur some accident 
which I cannot forget. My venturesome disposition led me 
frequently into grief. Many times I have been seriously 
injured by runaway horses, maddened cattle and vicious 
dogs. I have almost constantly carried some part of my 
anatomy in a sling, or under bandages or splints of some 
kind. Three times I have been rendered unconscious by 
accidents. Before I had reached the age of 21 I had been 
twice stabbed and three times shot accidently, and at this 
writing I am on crutches, the result of an automobile acci- 

I have had a broken arm, a fractured cheek, a dislocated 
wrist, a sprained ankle and a broken heart, from the latter 
of which I have never recovered. 

My youthful days were spent in hunting opossums with 


"Coons," playing pranks on teachers at little red school 
houses and carrying out in part the directions of a doctor. 

At the age of 16 I left home and earned the price of 
scholastic and medical information, having acquired creden- 
tials at Bellevue and Atlanta. I adopted the medical profes- 
sion because of a desire to emulate my illustrious father, 
which, in many particulars, I have failed to do. 

My father organized a regiment over which he presided 
as Colonel during the war between the States, and I was 
a kettle drummer for my father at the age of 10 years. He 
devoted fifty-six of the best years of his life to the practice 
of medicine, and I have already given more than fifty, hence 
we have given in the aggregate more than one hundred and 
six years to suffering humanity. It is safe to say one-third 
of that time has gone to charity; one-third to those who 
could but would not pay, and the remaining third to those 
who paid us money we could not keep. I was born with 
a silver spoon in my mouth, but the Civil War converted it 
into pewter. 

I have filled many offices in medical societies, varying 
from secretary to president. At one time I was Chief Sur- 
geon of a Government hospital in the Islands of Hawaii. 
I was a Lieutenant in the United States Public Health Serv- 
ice, and Major in the Medical Corps of the Mexican Federal 
Army in time of war. The only injury sustained during the 
latter war referred to, aside from insulting my stomach with 
frijole beans and billy-goat bakes, was a wound upon the 
back of my hand which has left a permanent scar. There 
was a shortage of saddles, as well as food, and I was pro- 
vided with a buggy, perhaps with malice and aforethought, 
as I was not notified that the buggy was drawn by a beau- 
tiful mare that would run away every time she passed down 
an incline. The road led down a steep grade at an approach 
to the San Juan River, and as soon as the breeching became 
taut upon her haunches she began to run. Not only did she 
run; she kicked at every jump. 

I could see the water straight in front of me and I was 
sure I was going to be baptized in the name of the Republic 
of Mexico. But the road made a sharp turn just at the 
water's edge and there the mare left me. The buggy was 
turned upside down and formed a canopy which protected 
my prostrate form from the big raindrops which fell from 
a drifting cloud. 

When the buggy was lifted I promptly gained my feet, 


and though my hand was aching intensely, I congratulated 
myself on not having been forced into an open-air bath at 
midnight in December. 

A few nights later, while escaping the enemy with our 
hospital on wheels, I found two eggs at a Mexican hut and 
I bought them at a price of 25 cents each. It was during the 
second night of an almost foodless thirty-six-hour fight, 
hence the eggs were a great find. I ate one of them and 
gave the other to Colonel Perez. He very courteously re- 
turned it to me, saying, "One egg will do neither of us any 
good, so you eat them both." I put it in my pocket, but 
through fear I would break and lose it I cracked off the shell 
at one end and though I could not see what I was doing 
I poured it down my throat. I nearly choked. I recognized 
the difficulty and I tried to catch the chick by the tail, but 
it slipped through my fingers. Since that time I eat no 
eggs in the dark. 

I have practiced medicine in Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, 
New York City, Texas, the Hawaiian Islands and a number 
of places in Mexico. My many changes of base will, in a 
measure, account for the unusually checkered experience 
I have had. 

I have not abandoned the profession, as many of my 
friends have done, because of a love of it and the pleasure 
of doing good to others, that to which a third of my life has 
been devoted. I yet have a hope of meriting the simple 
epitaph, "An Ethical Physician." 

In granting friendly requests I have reduced to writing 
a few of the many incidents of my life, without regard to 
rotation, and they are published accordingly. They have 
been written in plain truth, without the slightest intention 
or desire* to emboss, embellish or be funny. They were 
intensely interesting to me at the time they occurred, and 
they are published with the modest hope that they will prove 
entertaining to at least some of those who may read them. 

Experience has forced me to credit the assertion, "Truth 
is stranger than fiction." 


In the State of Sinaloa, Mexico, a Mexican peon brought 
me a specimen of ore which assayed thirty dollars gold and 
twenty dollar silver to the ton. Of course that made it a 


very desirable buy, and the man urged me to buy it outright, 
but knowing the wily peon as I did I preferred a personal 
inspection first. A price was agreed upon in case the pur- 
chase proved advisable, and a day was appointed upon which 
to meet the peon at the Fuerte River, which flowed quite 
near the peon's home. 

Armed with a rifle, a pistol, a pack mule and a peon, I 
started on my first trip as a mine seeker. At the end of 
the first day I reached the river at the point agreed upon. 
It was a regular crossing, but was for the time abandoned 
as it was the wet season, during which all water courses 
are too full to be forded. 

On the bank of the river there was a house which had 
been built by the Jesuits. It was a long, one-story building 
of several rooms all in a row. Like most houses of adobe, 
it had a dirt roof and a dirt floor. The house was con- 
structed several hundred years ago and was leaky and dan- 
gerous from age. Several Mexicans and Indians, who eked 
an existence through handling cattle, resided in it. 

Jesus Angelo was the name of the man who was to meet 
me at that place, .and when he was inquired after the eldest 
of the inhabitants replied, "El va venir pronto." (He will 
come soon.) 

About every half hour I repeated my inquiry, and invari- 
ably received the same reply. 

The sun was sinking in the western horizon and I was 
growing anxious. Fearing I would not see Jesus Angelo 
that night, I sent one of the Indians after him. The fellow 
went away mounted on a mule of his own and he disappeared 
in a sweeping gallop. The mule galloped, but what mule 
would not gallop under similar circumstances? He was a 
misareble, dejected specimen, but he yielded to the influence 
of a pair of spurs which weighed about two pounds each 
and supplied the animation. 

Just before dark all of the other men mounted horses 
and rode away without giving any explanation of their 
actions. They simply locked the doors and rode away, leav- 
ing me in possession of the veranda and a rawhide cot upon 
which to spend the night. 

At 10 o'clock the Indian courier had not returned, and 
notwithstanding I was still more uneasy, I removed my 
clothing and went to bed. 

About midnight I dreamed the men I had seen ride away 
had returned to rob or kill me. At that selfsame moment 


I was aroused by a terrible clatter of horses' hoofs, and 
horsemen made a wild rush upon the veranda. Suddenly 
the noise ceased, and a deathlike stillness was more appall- 
ing than the noise had been. Still somewhat dazed from 
the deep sleep from which I had been so ruthlessly aroused, 
I raised my head from the pillow and looked around me. I 
saw a large number of men standing upon the veranda 
within thirty feet of my cot, and the natural inference was 
that they had returned in fulfillment of my dream. 

Wishing to make no mistake I hailed them, but under 
the excitement of the moment I addressed them in English 
and there was no reply. Without further hesitation, and 
without leaving the cot, I raised upon my elbow and fired. 
The sharp crack of the rifle and a writhing upon the floor 
told an unmistakable story, and the men scattered like 
frightened sheep. 

I had selected one of the objects as my target, hoping to 
get more than one with my first shot as they appeared sev- 
eral deep and my rifle was of great penetration. 

Not only did the men run in different directions, but 
they yelled like goats under the knife. With one accord 
they exclaimed: "Estamos amigos! Estamos amigos!" 
(We are friends! We are friends!) The voices sounded as 
though emanating from a thousand throats, but in reality 
came from but two. 

The Indian courier and Jesus Angelo were drunk. They 
had rushed upon the veranda, dismounted and stood by the 
heads of their mules, and every mule, tree trunk and post in 
the neighborhood seemed to be a man on the veranda. 

The mule owned by the Indian had received a bullet 
through its brain as it stood by the side of its drunken mas- 
ter, and now laid stiff in death upon the floor. 

Of course the mule had to be paid for, and being dead 
its value was much enhanced. One hundred and fifty dol- 
lars for a thirty-dollar mule was extortionate, but to con- 
tend in the courts would entail untold difficulties. On the 
following morning the price of the mule was paid and the 
journey continued. 

The supposed mine could never be found. The peon had 
simply indulged in the favorite pastime of his ilk, deception. 

Four days of hard riding, and the privilege of paying for 
a dead mule, was all I reaped for my venture. 



Tradition has long told of a cave in Hawaii which was 
reserved for the bodies of Kings and such men as fell in 
wars. No one seemed to know of the real existence of the 
cave, yet everybody talked about it. 

I gained the confidence of many of the older Hawaiians, 
and from one of them learned there was such a cave and 
I was told the history of it. 

Only three persons at any one time were permitted to 
know the facts concerning it. My informant was one of 
the three existing at that time. At the death of any one 
of the three the remaining two would select another and 
swear him by a terrible oath never to take anyone to the 
cave, or divulge any of its secrets without the knowledge 
and consent of the others. For any violation of the oath 
the violator was bound to enter the cave and there starve 
himself to death amid the bones of those who had preceded 
him. After this, they would take a new member to the cave 
and introduce him to its mysteries. In this way the knowl- 
edge of the cave has been perpeuated from a time which 
pre-dates the knowledge of man. 

Learning the names of the other two men who were in 
possession of the secret, I invited them to meet the inform- 
ant at my home. I entertained them into the wee small 
hours of the night when everyone else was asleep. I filled 
them with beer and champagne until they were in a good 
humor and a communicative mood. 

Before they had left the house I had bribed them into 
a promise to take me to the cave. I was cautious to see that 
they were not too drunk to know what they were saying, 
or would forget what they had said. 

It was agreed the trip would be made at night and I was 
to be blindfolded, kept so until within the cave, and must 
go under penalty of death should I ever violate the fearful 
oath I would be required to take. In all of this I readily 
acquiesced and the Hawaiians left the house, but without 
having appointed a time for the visit to the cave. I was 
simply to await the will of the three. 

It was 12 o'clock on a dark, drizzly night that they came 
and they lead a riderless horse. I was hoodwinked and 
the oath administered. Then I was assisted to the saddle 
and we rode away, mounted upon four Kanaka ponies which 


weighed about seven hundred pounds each. The horse rid- 
den by me was lead by one of the Kanakas. I was not per- 
mitted to take the reins in my hands. 

They made a long and tortuous route to confuse me on 
direction, and in this they succeeded beyond a doubt. It 
was certain we traveled every point of the compass — a fact 
proved by the wind, which struck us at times on the back, 
in the face and on the side. 

They wound and twisted through fields of blooming cane, 
the bright tassels of which bobbed and nodded in the breeze 
like so many spooks, lending assent to the wierd undertak- 
ing. They climbed through rocky gulches, passed through 
dense forests and crossed prairies of well-grown grass. 
Finally they came to a stop in what I supposed was an open 
prairie, and I was told to dismount. 

The natives tied the animals to the tall grass, as only 
natives can do, and they led me a short distance away on 
foot. Then we went down through a hole in the rocks which 
was barely large enough to admit the body of an oversized 

After we had felt our way a few feet down in the dark- 
ness they exacted a renewal of the oath, removed the hood- 
wink from my eyes and lighted several candles. 

I was in a rather uncomfortable position, because neither 
of the natives could speak English and I was not able to 
comprehend all that they said. They seemed not much more 
than half civilized, and I was entirely at their mercy. How- 
ever, I knew they had a profound respect for a medical man 
and this nerved me through the task. 

The passageway turned to the right and to the left as 
it wound its way down. Pretty soon we entered a large and 
commodious apartment. The floor had been leveled and 
roomy shelves had been cut in the walls. The shelves ex- 
tended, one above the other, clear up to the ceiling and ran 
all around the room from one side of the entrance to the 

It was the old Hawaiian custom to place bodies of the 
nobility in the cave stretched out to full length. All others 
were bound up in a heap with ropes made of native fiber. 
Thus it was an easy matter to determine the former stand- 
ing of a man by the position in which his bones were found. 
The bones of royalty were stretched upon the shelves and 
the others were piled upon each other in the center of the 

The bones upon the shelves were accompanied by spears, 
stone adzes, battleaxes and many other implements used by 
the individual in time of tribal war. There were also many 
other things of interest in the cave, such as calabashes, poi 
beaters, hair necklaces and feather cloaks, many of which 
were in decay. There is but one specimen of these cloaks 
in existence today which is in a perfect state of preserva- 
tion. It is in the Bishop Museum at Honolulu and is valued 
at one million dollars. They were worn only by royalty and 
cost the labor of years in accumulating the feathers of which 
they are made. There was a tiny little bird in the islands, 
now extinct, which had but two yellow feathers, one in each 
wing. Of these little feathers the cloaks were made, so it 
can readily be seen how many thousands of the innocent 
little creatures are represented in each cloak. 

The necklaces were made of hair, cut many times, from 
the heads of women killed by order of the King on account 
of the wealth of their hair. They consist of braids braided 
into braids. They begin with three strands of hair to the 
braid and end in a braid two to three inches in diameter, 
finishing a work of great ingenuity. All of the stone arti- 
cles were in a state of perfect preservation and were perfect 
specimens of Hawaiian handiwork which spoke volumes for 
the genius of the untutored savages who constructed them 
with implements of their own make. 

There was a passway leading around the circular space 
in the center of the room. This center was piled high with 
human bones. There were bones of hundreds of braves who 
had died in battles fought, many times, for very trivial 

I was told the coat in which Captain Cook was killed had 
long been a bone of contention among the tribes; that its 
possession was looked upon as a mark of distinction and 
many a hard battle had been fought on account of it. A 
noble-hearted chief once won it at the cost of half of his 
following. It had been always understood that the first man 
who died in the Cook coat should be buried in it, and thus 
put a stop to tribal strife on account of it. Accordingly, this 
man of peace, who had won it in battle forced upon him, 
wore it into the cave and starved himself to death in it in 
order to stop the carnage which resulted from its possession. 

The sheen of the brightly polished walls and shelves daz- 
zled my eyes even in the dim candlelight. Upon one of the 
shelves as low down as a man's waist there was a gleam of 


brightness emanating from a few small spots much brighter 
than the rest. Upon inquiry I was told the sheen came from 
the spot where the chief had died in the Cook coat. I moved 
over to that particular shelf and was promptly told to feast 
my eyes, but was warned not to touch anything that I saw. 

The shining objects were the gold buttons of the Cook 
coat, and were the only parts of it which had not long since 
passed into decay. Believing that I had a greater right 
to the possession of these buttons than the Hawaiians I 
watched for an opportunity, attracted the attention of the 
three men to another object, and placed two of the buttons 
in my pocket. I knew there was a hole in the pocket and 
that the buttons would slip down into my boots and not be 
found if I was searched on leaving the cave. I firmly be- 
lieved I would be searched, but my suspicions were ground- 

When I announced my readiness to leave the cave I was 
returned to my home in the manner in which I had been 
taken away, and the hoodwink was removed after I had 
dismounted and was within my own gate. 

Cufflinks were made of the buttons and worn in memory 
of Captain Cook and the cave. 



My first practical joke was played when I was 10 years 
of age. 

There was a young man named Wilkins who resided 
near our home. He had incurred the ill will of all the 
younger members of my family, through no other offense 
than his infatuation for Miss Mitchell, who was my cousin 
and resided with us. 

Mr. Wilkins was a frequent visitor and came at stated 
intervals, so it was easy to prepare for him. 

One night, immediately before his arrival, I moistened 
the palm of my right hand and wiped it across the back of 
an open fireplace, thoroughly smearing it with soot. Then 
I placed myself behind the front door where I would be in 
readiness to open it before a servant could respond to the 

When I heard the young man walk up to the steps my 
heart nearly bounded out of my bosom, and my breath came 
quick and short. I almost lost faith in my ability to carry 


out my plans, but I buoyed myself to the task and opened 
the door. I shook hands with Mr. Wilkins and invited him 
into the parlor. 

Mr. Wilkins had the habit of rubbing his open palms 
together and then drawing them, first one and then the 
other, over his cheeks. So he was not long in spreading 
the soot handed him at the front door. 

His presence was announced and when Miss Mitchell 
entered the parlor and spied the black face she almost 
screamed. She came to a sudden halt, then began to step 
backward. Wilkins advanced to shake hands, but she trem- 
blingly maintained her distance. This surprised Wilkins 
and he discontinued his advance. But she did not stop. 
She continued the backward step until the door was reached 
and she sprang through it and was gone. 

Thinking Wilkins was drunk, she ran upstairs as fast 
as she could go and informed my father of the situation. 

To be drunk in those days, particularly in the presence 
of a lady, was an unpardonable sin. Nearly all Southern 
gentlemen took their toddies and mint juleps, but one who 
drank to excess did so under the pain of social ostracism. 

Wilkins was now in a dilemma and was mystified. He 
was greatly confused by the strange action of the girl, for 
he was entirely ignorant of the ludicrous spectacle he pre- 
sented. Both sides of his face were about as black as soot 
could make them, but he was unconscious of it. But I was 
reaping the pleasure of my trick. I had placed myself at 
a window on the veranda, where I was convulsed with 

In the center of the room Mr. Wilkins stood, perfectly 
bewildered. And he was still spreading the soot when my 
father walked into the room. Addressing Mr. Wilkins, he 
said: "I am sorry I have mistaken you for a gentleman. 
Leave this house immediately and never dare to return until 
you have satisfactorily apologized for your conduct. Go!" 

"I do not understand this, Doctor Hunter. What have 
I done to merit such treatment?" 

"How can you ask such a question, you shameless in- 
grate? Turn your face to that mirror and explain, if you 

Wilkins approached the mirror, which he had not before 
observed, and learned his true condition. He was so aston- 
ished he was for a moment dumb. He knew some terrible 
accident had occurred, but just when or how, he knew not. 


The confidence of innocence nerved him and he convinced 
my father he was neither drunk nor drinking, nor was he 
responsible for his condition. This being the case, he was 
given an opportunity to arrange his toilet as best he could 
with soap and water. 

But this is not all that happened to Wilkins that night. 
There were others out for fun, but neither had confided in 
the other. 

From the roof of the house one of my brothers gave Wil- 
kins a shower bath as he walked from the veranda. It 
was with soapsuds from a large sausage stuffer which held 
about a gallon. 

When he got into his buggy he sat in a pool of indelible 
ink, which had been poured upon the cushion by another 
brother. Still another brother had driven tacks, points for- 
ward, in the breeching of the harness, and Wilkins wondered 
why his lazy old horse was so anxious to get home. 

,There was one short, steep hill in the road and there 
Wilkins and his horse parted. When the breeching im- 
pinged upon the old nag's haunches in holding the buggy 
back the tacks were driven into his skin. He twisted him- 
self from side to side, revolved his stubby tail in a circle a 
time or two, kicked the body to pieces and disappeared. 

Two hours later Mr. Wilkins walked into his father's 
house holding his lower jaw in the palm of his hand, while 
elephantine tears rolled down his muddy cheeks. 

He never came back. 


I was sitting in a boat at the edge of a river quietly 
awaiting at what was known as the "bear crossing." Dogs 
and men were in the swamp on the other side of the river 
with the hope of driving out a bear and of making him 
cross the river where I was stationed. 

. Long before a dog was heard a large bear entered the 
river quite near the boat and attempted to swim over to the 
swamp. As might have been expected, the negro whom I 
had taken along to row the boat was asleep, and the chase 
was, in consequence, delayed. However, when the fellow 
was awakened he plied the oars with such vigor the boat 
rapidly gained upon the bear. When within fifty feet of the 
animal I took deliberate aim at the creature's head and 


fired. The bear shook his head, splashed the water with 
his feet and head and made greater efforts to reach the 
other shore. 

"Hole on, boss," said the negro. 'Tse gwine ketch um. 
Hole on till you gits close up to um and den shoot again." 

It was evident the negro had but little confidence in my 
marksmanship, as I had failed to kill the bear at the first 
shot, as I was expected to do. 

A few moments brought the boat within five feet of 
the brute's head, and I took aim and pulled the trigger. But 
the gun snapped. The boat was now nearly touching the 
bear, and it was time for quick action. The breech of the 
gun was opened to remove the empty shell and the cartridge 
which had failed to fire, but neither could be done. The 
shells were of brass and had stuck hard and fast from 

A moment more and the bear had hold of the boat. His 
ugly paws held fast to the side of it, and it was evidently 
his intention to climb in. As the gun was of no further use, 
other means of defense had to be devised, and quickly at 

I laid the gun down in the bottom of the boat, picked 
up an oar and dealt the bear a terrific blow upon the head. 
The oar glanced from his thick skull and he caught it in his 
mouth. I expended my entire physical strength pulling at 
the oar, but I could not break the grip of the strong- jawed 
brute. I continued a steady, hard pull, and at a moment not 
suspected the bear opened his mouth and I went heels over 
head into the water on the opposite side of the boat. As 
I arose to the surface I caught hold of the boat just opposite 
the bear, and we stared each other in the eye as each tried 
to get into the boat first. 

It is well known to swimmers that when holding to the 
side of the boat in the water there is an almost irresistible 
tendency of the feet to go up against the bottom of the boat. 

It is evidently the same with a bear, because the long, 
sharp claws of that bear were soon fastened in the bottom 
of my pants legs under the boat. I could not get them 
away, so I just unbuttoned my pants at the waist and let 
the bear have them. 

During these interesting moments I was appealing to 
the negro to kill the bear. "Kill him, Bill ; kill him quickly 
or he will get us. Kill him with the anchor." But Bill 


heeded not. He was too badly frightened to move, think 
or speak. 

"Kill him, Bill. If you do not kill him we will both be 

That seemed to soak in with some effect, and though 
trembling like a dog in an ice bath the negro seized the 
anchor, stood straight up in the boat and dealt the bear a 
violent blow— a blow so violent it shook the boat from stem 
to stern. The anchor fell from his hands and he seemed to 
lose all presence of mind. 

Quivering with fear, and showing the whites of his eyes 
like two china eggs, he sprang back to his end of the boat. 
But he did not stop there. He had put on too much steam 
and he went over the stern of the boat and was buried in 
the muddy water of the stream. 

When Bill came to the surface and saw the bear strug- 
gling in the water like an ungoverned flutter-wheel, he 
pulled for the shore, and he screamed at every stroke of 
his arms. 

The negro's mighty blow had killed the bear, so it soon 
ceased to move. By that time I had climbed back into the 
boat, and I threw a rope around the dead bear and towed 
it to the shore. 



The first week of my experience as a plantation physi- 
cian in the Islands of Hawaii was spent at the residence of 
the manager. A house was being renovated for my occu- 

During the preparation of the house the residents told 
strange tales about it. It had been occupied as a hospital 
and many persons had died in it. It was said by the super- 
stitious that ghosts of the dead met there to devise means 
of punishment for the overseers who had been cruel to them 
in life. Be that as it may, the house was known far and 
wide as the Haunted House of Hawaii. 

Many times, during the immediate preceding years, occu- 
pancy had been attempted by individuals, but no one had 
been induced to pass a second night in the house. Strange 
noises were so loud and confusing no one could sleep in the 


house, so from sheer exhaustion, if not from fear, they 
would go elsewhere in search of rest. 

The chief overseer told me it was the height of folly 
for me to attempt to occupy the house, and he told a strange 
story of a woman seen one night walking in the direction 
of the place. The woman suddenly appeared in front of 
himself and the assistant overseer, at midnight, and walked 
directly toward the house. She was seen very clearly be- 
neath a full moon which was climbing up the eastern hori- 
zon and was shedding its soothing light upon the world. 
The gentlemen were so near the woman they could distin- 
guish her dark hair, white waist and black skirt, and it 
seemed she would weigh about one hundred and fifty 
pounds. It was a late hour for a woman to be out alone, 
and they quickened their pace to overtake her, but they 
could not do so. The faster they walked the faster she 
would walk. They called to her, but she paid no more atten- 
tion to them than if they had not spoken. When opposite 
the gate she darted through it and was gone. 

The gate was immediately in front of the door and there 
was but one foot of space between it and the veranda floor. 
There were three rooms in the house; two communicating 
rooms in front and one long room in the rear which extended 
the full length of the house. The long room communicated 
with one of the front rooms and had one back door which 
opened upon the back yard. The floor was so near the 
ground it was impossible for anyone to get underneath the 
house. Immediately as the woman disappeared the two men 
ran to the gate and entered it. One went to the right and 
the other to the left of the house where they could see the 
whole yard, back and front. Then one of them entered the 
house at the front door and the other at the back door. 
They struck matches and searched the house, but nothing 
but the bare floors could be found. There was neither a 
roof opening nor a trap through the floor. The yard was 
very small and was surrounded by a tall board fence over 
which no one could pass without previous preparation. 
There was nothing in the yard but short grass; absolutely 
no place in which a person might hide. 

The stories did not disconcert me in the least. In fact, 
I enjoyed hearing them. I was glad of the possibility of 
realizing my life's desire, that of confronting a ghost. 

I was really anxious to get into the house, notwithstand- 


ing many persons had told me they would not, for the whole 
world, attempt to pass a single night there. I took posses- 
sion of the house in the afternoon and read until twilight. 
Then I went to supper and left a light burning in the house 
so everything was in statu quo upon my return. 

I retired at 10 o'clock, and as soon as the house was in 
darkness the troubles began. All sorts of inconceivable 
noises were heard. Persons seemed to talk and walk and 
roll barrels of rocks about the floor. Many times the noise 
sounded as though the shingles were being torn from the 
roof. It was just impossible to sleep. Many times I arose 
from bed and searched the whole house for some cause of 
the disturbances, but none could be found. The instant my 
feet would touch the floor, or a light was made, all noises 
would cease. 

The back room was occupied as a drug department, hav- 
ing many shelves filled with many bottles of many sizes. 
About 2 o'clock in the morning I heard one of the largest 
bottles fall from the top shelf and smash to pieces upon the 
floor. As quickly as possible I sprang to my feet and ran 
into the room, striking a match as I went. But there was 
no medicine spilled. There was no broken glass upon the 
floor and every bottle was in its respective place just as they 
had been when I went to bed. It seemed absolutely impos- 
sible for such a crash to occur without leaving some evidence 
of it, but it did. 

The second night was much the same. Persons tramped 
the floor, rapped upon the walls and ceiling and did every 
devilish thing possible to keep one awake. At one time I 
heard a person walk into the bedroom and stop at the side 
of the foot of the bed within easy reach of my feet. Momen- 
tarily I expected to feel cold hands take hold of my feet, and 
I instinctively drew them up. At that selfsame moment 
I struck a match and uplifted a machete to carve the ghost, 
but there was no ghost to carve. All sounds ceased imme- 
diately as I struck the match, but I got out of bed and 
searched as I had done many times before, but my efforts 
to gain information were as fruitless as a barren tree. 

The third night was a repetition of the rest, except for 
one distinctive feature. Heretofore the house had been 
closed at night, but on that occasion I wished to receive my 
ghostly guests with open house, wondering if it would make 
any difference in their behavior. Every door and window 


in the house was left wide open. The moon was shining so 
brightly one could almost read without any other light. 

Shortly after midnight I heard voices, seemingly of per- 
sons seated upon a bench which was upon the veranda just 
to the right of my room window. The blinds were wide open 
and the sash was pushed up as high as it could go. As 
noiselessly as possible I slipped from my bed and thrust my 
body suddenly out of the window clear down to my waist. 
I met with a great surprise. Not at what I saw, but at what 
I did not see. The veranda was absolutely free from any 
living thing and there was nothing but moonlight and space 
to be seen. The talking had ceased the moment my feet 
touched the floor. I was greatly puzzled, but as I knew of 
no remedy I returned to my bed and really went to sleep. 
I slept from exhaustion, the result of watchfulness and 
anxiety to discover the cause of my unrest. Night after 
night the disturbances were the same, but I grew accus- 
tomed to my environment and slept as one sleep under the 
din of battle or the constant hum of moving machinery. 

Nearly a year was passed in the house, but the mystery 
was never solved. 


Talpa is a small town in the mountains of the State of 
Jalisco, Mexico. It nestles down in a cup-shaped valley, and 
the adobe houses seen in the distance remind one of speckled 
eggs in a bird's nest. The lofty peaks which surround the 
place resemble sentinels placed there to guard the town. 
Between the tall peaks there are a few rough and rugged 
trails which lead, through narrow passes, down to the town. 
They have been traveled hundreds of years, but are no bet- 
ter for the usage. 

Talpa is one of the most noted shrines now maintained 
by the Roman Church in Mexico and persons seeking for- 
giveness of sins go there in great numbers twice a year. It 
is there that the Virgin Mary appears every day during the 
"fiesta." During the fiesta days the trails are alive with 
persons of all ages and of both sexes. Some are mounted 
on horses, some on mules and some on donkeys, but the 
great bulk of them are on foot. They come from great dis- 
tances, covering weeks of travel. Time is of no value to 


them. Once there they are happy — happy because they 
receive the silent benediction of the Virgin and are for- 
given of all sins. 

I reached the town at night and found but two vacant 
rooms in the place. One was held at five dollars a day and 
the other at eight dollars, without board. They were in 
houses built of adobe, hence were but large dirt boxes with- 
out bedding or ventilation. There were but two openings 
to a room, a window and a door, both of which had to be 
closed and barred at night for safety. It was evident the 
citizens lived the remainder of the year upon what they 
grafted during the fiesta under the very gaze of the Virgin 

The town cannot accommodate the people. Food is 
bought whenever and wherever it can be gotten, but many 
go hungry at times. There are booths erected in every 
direction for selling food, and there is an almost continuous 
line of them for miles upon each of the roads leading to the 
place, but the supply does not equal the demand. 

The visitors literally carpet the ground with their bodies 
at night. They prostrate themselves in the streets like so 
many sheep in a pen. It is difficult to get about after they 
begin to lie down, because one has to step over men, women 
and children, like stepping over ties on a railroad track. 

All day there is a continuous stream of humanity, a 
crushing jam of men and women flowing through the 
church. They enter at the front door, all upon their knees, 
and they pass out at another door, leaving all their sins 
behind them. They are redeemed. Redeemed because they 
have been seen by the Virgin Mary. Notwithstanding, Mary 
is but a little idol of elaborate construction exposed to view 
by drawing a curtain of richest silk. 

At a point one hour's ride from the church there is a 
cross erected upon a pedestal of stone in one of the most 
difficult of the passes. At the foot of the cross, as is the 
case in many other places, there is a pathetic appeal for 
funds. Everyone who reaches the cross is expected to crawl 
up the rough stone steps upon their knees, kiss the cold 
stone and deposit a few cents. Those who are especially 
penitent do not rise to their feet after crawling to the cross. 
They proceed to the church upon their bared knees. Many 
wear large crowns of sharp thorns which draw blood from 
their scalps, while the rough stones of the trail do not fail 


A Female Penitent Going to Church on Her Knees on Blankets 

to bleed them at the knees. Some struggle down the moun- 
tain under the weight of large wooden crosses, which they 
take to the door of the church lashed to their aching backs. 
Some have heavy poles lashed to their extended arms, 
which, reaching across their backs, resemble crosses. The 
poles and crosses are of such weight they require the entire 
strength of the person to bear them. Others tie their ankles 
together, necessitating steps of an inch or two in length, 
with which they push along their sore and bleeding feet. 
Some men and some women alike doing penance walk upon 
their knees upon blankets spread upon the ground. While 
one blanket is being taken up from behind another is being 
spread down in front. This protects their knees and they 
lose no blood. They are evidently more wise than the others. 
Without food or drink many of them consume a day and 
a night upon the trail between the cross and the church. 
They often reach the church exhausted, bleeding and faint- 
ing. But what does that matter to them? They deposit 
their barbarous means of self-torture at the door of the 
church and are made pure and holy, no matter what vile 
sins they may have committed. Thus easily forgiven, they 
are prepared to cut, kill, rob or do any other dirty work, for 
they can as easily be forgiven again. To be seen by the 
Virgin is a guarantee of absolution, at least they are made 


Manner of Entering a Catholic Church in Mexico 

to believe it is so. Their credulity is past understanding. 

It was said the Virgin had made a midnight visit to the 
neighboring town of Mascota, and the ignorant creatures 
eagerly bought little packets of dust said to have been taken 
from the tracks she had made in the road. 

Who originated the story of the Virgin's midnight visit ? 
Who got the money for which the dust was sold? From 
what will be later said one may be able to decide. 

I attended the fiesta of the Virgin to prove, or disprove, 
the many wonderful stories I had heard of it. I had been 
led to believe it a purely religious affair, but instead of this 
I found it a diabolical, gambling hell, carried on under the 
guise of religion. Every device for gambling was there, 
carried on publicly, both day and night. From the petty 
game of the peon upon a blanket upon the ground to the 
most approved of modern swindling machines were there. 
Many persons sold wares of spurious character, such as 
rosaries, pictures of the saints, crosses, etc., of much less 
value than the price, but they were considered of no real 


value until blessed by a priest at the cost of a few cents. 
The priests would bless a pig or a chicken for a few cents. 
This latter proceedure was witnessed by me when my cook 
had a pig blessed that she might use it to protect her from 
the evil spirits that she believed were subject to control by 
the priests. 

But all was not peace and love at the fiesta. Men, women 
and children wept on account of losses, for robbery was rife. 
It was a rendezvous of fakirs. The beggars were thicker 
than the thieves. The halt, the blind, the sick and the lep- 
rous were there, and they plied their vocations as beggars in 
the half song tone of a priest. The lepers sat all day long 
upon the roadside in the burning sun and displayed their 
sickening infirmities as they plead for pennies in the name 
of the holy saints. 

Why is all this wickedness and blasphemous worship at 
the fiesta ? That it is at least permitted by the authorities, 
who could stop it if they would, goes without saying. There 
are always numerous policemen and soldiers of the regular 
army there who could interfere, but they do not. 

A loser at one of the gambling machines remonstrated 
with the operator, who, to appease anger, became commu- 
nicative. "Do not be angry with me," said the fellow. "I 
have no interest in this game except my daily wages." 
"What! Do you tell me this game is not yours?" 
"Cretainly I do. I am operating it for others." 
"Pray tell me, then, who gets the money you are rob- 
bing us of?" 

"The Church and the high State officials." 
Not being willing to rely upon the statement of one man 
alone in a matter so grave, I inquired of many others who 
were in position to know, and in every instance, if an 
answer was given at all, it was the same. 

But this is not the worst of the wickedness resulting 
from the fiestas. The proverbial rock piles along the roads 
which mark all places in Mexico where a death has occurred 
were numerous along all the roads leading to Talpa, and this 
in face of the face that Government soldiers are seen all 
along on the roads. Where the country was open, practi- 
cally free from timber and there were no places for conceal- 
ment, there were but few rock piles. But wherever timber 
or large boulders were found, they were in appalling 


Leaving Talpa early in the morning, I counted the rock 
piles seen along the road during the first day of travel, and 
the number reached five hundred and seventy-four. Think 
of it ! Five hundred and seventy-four deaths, most of them 
from violence occurring on a road leading to a sacred shrine ! 
Contemplate the sum total on all of the roads and one can 
but be appalled at the sad commentary on Roman Catholi- 
cism in Mexico. 



I did not know that a buffalo shot through the lung 
would surely die. The first I had ever seen were six oM 
bulls feeding upon the top of a flat hill. I crawled up the 
side of the hill and shot at them. I aimed at nothing but 
the great dark brown herd. I was so anxious to kill one of 
them I just fired at them as a boy usually shoots at a covey 
of flying birds. They all ran away and I feared I had missed 
the whole bunch. But how could I have missed them? It 
was like shooting into a dense forest and not expecting to 
hit a tree. 

I followed them in a run, but I didn't run far. An old 
bull turned and ran at me. The hideous creature looked as 
large as a house, so Lalsr; 'turned and ran. I wished for 
wings that I mi-ght\ fly. 'but I: doubt if wings would have 
speeded me up any/ for I beat the bull 'to a haven. I dodged 
between some large rocks just as the bull was about to 
catch me. 

The buffalo rubbed his stubby horns upon the rocks 
within a few inches of- my body } but he could not reach me. 
It was strange I did not think of shooting again until the 
bull had gone away, wasn't it? 

After a time I climbed up over the hill again and I saw 
the buffalo fall to the ground as he was trying to regain his 
place in the herd. Repeatedly he would fall and rise again, 
until finally he did not try to get up. That produced an 
inexplicable thrill of happiness, and I felt of much more 
importancec than David did when he killed Goliath. 

With due caution I walked up quite near to the brute, 
laid my rifle down upon the ground and drew my butcher 
knife from my bootleg. I crept to the buffalo's head, placed 
my foot upon the horn which was in contact with the 


ground and took hold of the other horn, fully believing I 
could hold the buffalo down until his throat could be cut. 
But alas, how mistaken I was! The instant the knife 
touched the skin of the neck, which it could not penetrate, 
the old bull gave a frightful groan and raised to his front 
feet. He threw me twenty feet away and I ran away on 
my "all fours." In my imagination I could feel the horns 
of the buffalo tearing the seat of my pants, and the agony 
of the moment was memorable. 

Looking back, I saw the buffalo could not get up on his 
hind legs, and I was much gratified to see him fall broad- 
side to the ground. I ventured within pistol shot and emp- 
tied my revolver in the animals back. That night I chewed 
on tough buffalo steak for an hour. 



There was a large crowd tenting around the Lampasas 
Springs in Texas, as was the custom of persons from all 
parts of the State. 

I became seriously infatuated with a beautiful brunette 
from Houston, whom I called "Nettle." We were riding one 
day and were away out across the distant prairie. 

For some unaccountable reason the horse Nettle was 
riding took fright and 'began to rim." • The bit parted in its 
mouth and it was at once beyond control. Nettle was an 
excellent rider aud she sat upon the horse with apparent 
indifference as it 'sped across the prairie, .with, the swiftness 
of a bird. > ; i ; • . \ „• 

It was not far to the timber and the animal was not 
likely to run himself down and slow his gait. Once the tim- 
ber was reached the danger was increased, even for the 
very best of riders. The horse could not be guided without 
a bit in its mouth, and it was likely to fly the track at any 
moment. It might turn suddenly into some cow trail, throw 
the girl against a tree and kill her. 

I pictured her in my mind lying dead and bleeding at 
my feet while I hurled anathemas at the treacherous brute, 
and even questioned the purpose of the All-Wise God who 
had permitted it. The agony of suspense was bewildering. 
My brain seemed to spin like a Chinese top. All I could do 
was to await the coming of the dreaded climax. 


But an idea seized me. I was on "Bruno," a little brown 
horse which had never been left in a race. Holding him 
back had not slackened the speed of the other horse, so I 
urged Bruno forward with all of his might. 

Nettle's horse bent every nerve as he stretched his neck 
forward and rushed over the trail as though propelled by 
steam. Bruno felt the prick of spurs in his sides and he 
knew what it meant. He threw himself into the race with 
wondrous force and seemed to catch inspiration from his 
master's thoughts. 

Like frightened deer the animals were running, and 
Bruno gained upon the other horse. Faster and faster they 
ran ff but Bruno soon closed the gap between them. A slight 
twist of the reins brought them side by side, and I placed 
my arm around Nettle's willowy waist and drew her to the 
saddle in front of me. 

Instantly Bruno slowed his gait, but the other horse 
passed out of sight, followed by "Sunday School Song" 
curses as I stood by Nettle's side and knew that she was 

How convenient trouble is sometimes! How it brings 
to light feelings that smoulder! How it encourages the 
committal of acts which could not under other circumstances 
be performed. 

Nettle was trembling with fear and was pale. I offered 
her the support of my arm and she took it. Her eyes quiv- 
ered as she looked into mine through sparkling tears of 
gratitude, and she leaned forward and kissed me. It was 
our first kiss, and I gave her many for the one. But, we 
never married. 



I was making a journey on a train, the conductor of 
which was an old friend. That particular train was a mixed 
night train and it was crowded to overflowing with pas- 
sengers. Standing room was at a premium, so the conductor 
invited me to ride in his cab. The cab was an ordinary 
freight box car, furnished with an arm chair and an impro- 
vised desk. It was also used as an express car and con- 
tained a number of packages and boxes of various sizes. 

Most of the time I was the sole occupant of the cab, for 


the conductor had business in various parts of the train. 

The hours dragged. They grew very monotonous be- 
cause there was nothing to read and no light in the cab 
except an old oil lantern. Becoming overpowered with 
drowsiness, I looked about for some place to lie down and 
sleep. Close to the wall of the cab there was a long and very 
large box. Upon examination I found that a cropse was in 
that big long box and was being shipped to some distant 
place. As a bed the coffin box was a great temptation to 
me, especially as it was labeled, "Died of No Contagious 

I could not resist the temptation to convert the coffin 
into a bed, so I took the cushion from the chair for a pillow 
and was soon fast asleep upon the coffin. Just how long 
I enjoyed the improvised couch I did not know, but it must 
have been for a brief space of time. 

Suddenly I awoke while uttering a chilling scream. A 
violent, headlong leap took me hard up against the sliding 
door of the opposite side of the cab, which fortunately was 
closed. Had the door been open I would have gone thrugh 
it and been killed, for I knew not and I cared not where I 
went, nor how. My sole object was to extricate myself from 
the harrowing, uncanny position I occupied. 

The coffin box top was very thin and the weight of my 
body had crushed it, splitting it into long strips. The corpse 
was that of a consumptive — long, emaciated and bony. The 
man had come to life and had reached his thin, skinny arms 
out through the slits in the box. The fleshless arms had 
lapped across my breast and were drawing me down into 
the coffin. At least, that is what I dreamed. 



When quite a young man it became apparently necessary 
for me to walk from Austin, Texas, to Lampasas. 

Twenty miles from Austin the road ran through a sec- 
tion of scrub timber which was generally known as the 
"Indian Trail." Under cover of the brushy timber the In- 
dians had traveled across that part of the road ever since 
it was a road, hence it was dreaded by all travelers; espe- 
cially was it dreaded at night. 

It was my hope that I would cross the scrub timber be- 


fore night, but I did not do it. I was not accustomed to 
walking, so I grew tired at an early hour. My feet swelled 
and they seemed to weigh forty pounds apiece. Before the 
close of the day I could scarcely step, and I was not yet 
beyond the center of the scrub. Tired, footsore and hungry, 
I laid down upon the roadside to await the coming of I knew 
not what. 

Just as I was falling asleep I heard footsteps of a horse, 
which seemed to be coming toward me. My heart pounded 
rny ribs in audible tones as I raised up to listen. Suddenly 
a horse jumped across a little ditch and stood still in the 
road. The rider seized his rifle and raised it in his hands. 
Immediately I placed my finger on the trigger of my gun 
and we were motionless. The unexpected meeting was a 
surprise to each of us, and we gazed at each other wonder- 
ing who would make the first move, and what it would be. 
At length the astonishment abated and the mounted man 
spoke : 

"What will you take for your rifle, stranger?" 

"Nothing," said I. 

"Will you not sell it? Will you not trade it? I have 
a fine horse I will give you for it." 

I had borrowed the rifle I had and if there ever was a 
time when I wanted a horse it was right then, but my sense 
of honor would not permit the selling of a gun which was 
not mine. Besides, I feared the proposition was a ruse 
through which I would be robbed, perhaps killed. The 
camper did not know I had no money, and it was natural 
for his to suspect that I had because my clothing indicated 

"Where is the horse?" I asked. 

"At my camp." 

"Where is your camp?" 

"Just a few rods from here." 

"Are you camping alone?" 

"No. There is another man, a woman and a child." 

. That was good news to me, because, if true, I would have 
protection for the night and something to eat, so in order 
to obtain those desirable things I intimated a desire to trade 
though I had not the remotest idea of doing so. 

"I will have a look at your horse," said I. "Go to your 
camp and I will follow you." 

The man left the road and pushed his way through the 


thick brush and I followed along behind him. He kept a 
close watch on me and I watched him equally as well. 

In a little while we reached a large open space, entirely 
free from brush, and I saw a tent, a man and a boy. A lit- 
tle to one side there was woman preparing supper. The 
smell of the juicy bacon, which was being fried, whetted 
my already keen appetite and I was glad when I was invited 
to eat before discussing the horse, trade. After supper I 
was told the animals were not in camp and the two men 
wandered off in search of them. This left me alone with 
the woman and the child. A woman in camp is not always 
a guarantee of safety, for some of them are worse than the 
worst of men. When a woman is bad she is bad to the very 
marrow of her bones, and wickedness saturates every fiber 
of her frame. But even that sort of woman can smile her- 
self into the good graces of some man as easily as water 
wets a silk cloth. Once she accomplishes this she knows it, 
and she controls that man, body and soul. 

To spend the night at the camp was just what I wanted 
to do, but when I became convinced my host was planning 
for the same thing I was filled with the dread of uncer- 
tainty. The more I pondered over the situation the more 
convinced I was of bad faith in the campers. 

Night came on and the men had not returned. Then I 
was invited into the tent by the woman, under pretense of 
escaping the cold wind. The child was put to bed in one 
corner of the tent and I was given a cot in another corner. 
The cot was placed firmly up against the tent so that the 
bulging of the cloth showed exactly where the cot was 
located. I noticed this peculiar act of the woman, but not 
suspecting her purpose I laid down upon the cot. 

Then the woman left the tent under pretense of neces- 
sary culinary affairs. But I got up and watched her. She 
walked directly beyond the fire and disappeared in the direc- 
tion the men had gone. 

It was a clear, cool night. The full moon had risen and 
mingled its gorgeous light with that of the garish stars 
which studded the firmament. The- night was as bright as 
day and as still as death. I had never allowed my rifle out 
of my hands for a single moment. I had eaten supper with 
it across my lap, and it was in my hands in the tent. I had 
a premonition of the approach of some foul scene, but I 
could not figure it out. I did not return to the cot after 


seeing the woman disappear. I was more content to sit up 
and watch for the coming events. 

The child was shivering in its sleep and aroused sym- 
pathy, so I lifted it gently from its pallet upon the ground 
and placed it upon the cot. I wrapped it snugly in the blan- 
ket which had been given for my comfort and I sat in the 
corner where the child had been. 

Suddenly a sharp report of pistols was heard from with- 
out. So nearly were the weapons simultaneously discharged 
they seemed almost as one. Smoke coming through the tent 
cloth just back of the cot showed where the bullets had 
entered. They had punctured the blanket wrapped around 
the child and had penetrated its head and back. The poor 
creature groaned with a faintly audible sound and blood ran 
from its mouth and ears. It gave on strong, spasmodic 
struggle and was dead. 

In a moment more an eye was seen peeping through the 
door of the tent where the folds were barely separated by 
unseen hands. Immediately I raised my rifle to my shoulder 
and fired. But I aimed above the eye, for I did not wish to 
take human life unless it became absolutely necessary to 
do so. I was sure they would not again shoot into the tent, 
there were no more landmarks. Besides, fear that the child 
because there were no more landmarks. Besides, fear that 
the child would arouse and be injured would safeguard 
against further shooting. They did not know at that mo- 
ment the poor creature was dead; that its innocent spirit 
had gone whence it came. That it was dead, perhaps at 
the hands of the mother who loved it best. But, is it not 
far better to die in infancy than to be reared by such a 
mother ? 

The time had come for me to escape, if indeed such could 
be done, and I well knew a bold move was necessary to suc- 
cess. I sprang suddenly through the tent door with the rifle 
at my shoulder and covered the first man that I saw. Fortu- 
nately I covered them both, as one was directly behind the 
other. Each man had a pistol in his hand, but before they 
could raise to shoot they heard the words, "Drop pistols. 
Hands up." The pistols hit the ground and the hands went 
up. The men cried, "Don't shoot! Don't shoot! We are 
your friends." 

"Move a muscle and you die," said I. "One bullet will 
get you both." 


All the while this was going on I was slowly moving 
backward toward the thick brush which was close at hand. 
When I reached the brush I darted into the thicket with an 
almost invisible movement and was gone. I walked perhaps 
miles in the direction of Lampasas, and slept the remainder 
of the night in a thick bunch of bushes. 

When I awoke in the morning I heard the rattling of 
chains and the rumble of a wagon. Immediately I sprang 
to my feet and approached the road. I moved cautiously 
so as not to be seen. I recognized the driver as a regular 
freighter and I ran to the wagon and jumped into it before 
being seen by the teamster. I slapped the fellow on the 
back with my open palm, and He went over the front wheel 
as quickly as the shadow of a flying bird can cross a wire 

"Stop ! Stop there, man ! You are in no danger." The 
man turned around as I stopped the team. 

"Where are you going with this wagon?" 

"I — I don't know now, but I started to Lampasas." 

"So did I. Get in and let's go." 

"That's all right, sir, but you drive. I'll walk." 
The man was still so uncertain of things he trembled as 
he spoke. He was not a coward, but his rifle was under the 
wagon seat and that made a great difference in his deport- 
ment. He could not be induced to get back into the wagon 
until a rifle was leveled at his head and he was ordered to 
get in. Then he climbed in and took the reins. 

We reached Lampasas just as the western horizon was 
hiding a gorgeous sun which sent out rays through the 
bright, shining clouds like so many silvery spokes in a grand 
chariot of gold. 



During my attendance upon medical lectures I received 
a visit by an old schoolmate named Taylor. Taylor was 
shown through the medical college and he heard several 
very interesting lectures, particularly one on anatomy. The 
latter lecture excited his curiosity beyond measure and he 
expressed, a keen desire to see the inside of a dissecting 

The subject being a good one, the time seemed propitious 


for a practical joke, so I told Taylor I would arrange with 
the janitor for a clandestine visit and I would take him 
through the "Hall of Stiffs." 

The night came, all plans were effected satisfactorily 
and I escorted my friend up the long stairway which led 
from the ground floor to the second story upon which the 
dissecting room was located. The old janitor met us at the 
door and invited us in. Then the janitor closed the door 
and disappeared. 

The room was a very large one and accommodated forty 
tables, situated several feet apart. Upon each table there 
was a corpse of a man, a woman or a child, and each was 
perfectly nude. The corpses were in all stages of dissection, 
from that of being slightly carved to a state of such mutila- 
tion they were beyond recognition. It is a sight that will 
try the nerves of any man not accustomed to death. 

Taylor and I were standing between two of the tables 
examining a very much carved carcass when suddenly it 
raised to a sitting posture, being drawn up by an invisible 
wire manipulated by the janitor, who was up in the space 
between the roof and the ceiling. 

With a loud exclamation of horror, Taylor sprang back- 
ward. He struck the table behind him with such force it 
turned completely over and sent the corpse which was upon 
it rolling to the floor. Then a mutilated corpse fell from the 
skylight and struck the floor immediately in front of Tay- 
lor. The door which led into the museum opened and the 
manikin, which was on rollers, seemed to walk into the 
room. The manikin was a papier-mache image of a man 
apparently skinned. It was so perfect is showed clearly 
the red arteries, the blue veins and the muscles. It had 
been smeared with phosphorescent oil in such a manner it 
was plainly visible when the lights went out. 

With one loud, long yell, and apparently with one leap, 
Taylor landed his ponderous body against the door, which 
had been locked by the janitor on the outside. The door 
flew wide open and Taylor was gone like a streak of light- 
ning. There was just one flash and it was all over. He was 
gone before I could speak to him ; and we never spoke again. 




One night in a city of Hawaii I drove into a livery stable 
and was accosted by a tall, handsome Kanaka who wore a 
dark skin and a black mustache. A large metallic star was 
shining upon the lapel of his coat and he carried a club in 
his hand, so it was not a difficult matter to locate him. 

"I arrest you," said the fellow. 

"The devil you do ! What is it for?" 

"For driving in the streets at night without a lantern." 

"I do not believe that a light is required on a bright night 
like this. The law says one must have a light during the 
hours of darkness. If you think these are hours of dark- 
ness you would better have your eyes tested. However, if 
I have violated any law I am willing to suffer the conse- 
quences. Just name the price and I will pay it." 

"I cannot take your money. I have arrested you." 

"Perhaps you think you have, but I do not agree with 
you. If you have arrested me it is up to you to make the 
first move. What do you think you are going to do?" 

"I am going to take you to the Sheriff." 

"Now see here, officer. I am going to be very plain 
with you. If you have arrested me it is your duty to take 
me with you, but I assure you if you attempt it you will 
have the warmest moment you have ever had in all the days 
of your life. I am not to be taken througli these streets 
under arrest unless I have committed some crime, so I 
promise you I will resist you just as long as there is a piece 
left of me large enough to make a grease spot upon a silk 
handkerchief. Now, do you understand me?" I then 
walked leisurely out into the street, leaving the Hawaiian 
officer a perfect monument of surprise. He seemed fixed 
to the floor like an Indian cigar sign, a thing not valued 
for its activity. 

The Sheriffs of the different islands were little less than 
Kings. Each ruled, absolutely, the island upon which he 
lived. I realized I was practically living at the will of that 
mighty dignitary, but I went to the Sheriff's office and 
related the circumstances exactly as they had occurred. I 
feared the consequences, but I believed I was right, and I 
always have the courage of my convictions. 


The Sheriff promptly replied, and in a way that greatly 
relieved my mind. "Right or wrong, Doctor," said the 
Sheriff, "I am surprised that you did not have trouble. 
That officer is reputed to be a courageous man and he not 
only has the authority to make arrests, but authority to use 
the necessary force to accomplish them. However, it is a 
bright night and we will drop the subject right here and 
now, and the matter shall remain an incident passed." 

The decision of the Sheriff reassured me, and I made 
a request of him. "You are aware, Mr. Sheriff, of the 
escape from your prison of one Lopez, a Porto Rican, a des- 
perate murderer who is condemned to the gallows. You 
know of his many dastardly acts before and since his escape. 
You know how he cuts, shoots and robs at will. The men 
and women in my section are afraid to put their noses out 
of doors at night. He enters houses and demands food. If 
it is mealtime he sits at the table, with his pistol at his 
plate, and he satisfies his appetite and leaves. Frequently 
he shoots back into a house after leaving it. He is now on 
our plantation, so there is good ground for the fear enter- 
tained by the people. Three nights ago he cut a horse loose 
from a buggy and robbed its occupants. He gave each one 
a chop with a machete and left them sitting in a horseless 
buggy with bleeding wounds. What I desire is authority to 
arrest him as under a bench warrant, in case I should chance 
to meet him. I am frequently out alone, in the night as 
well as in the day, and I would not like to meet him unless 
I had the right to arrest him, or kill him if it became neces- 
sary to do so. I certainly would not attempt to capture him 
under any other circumstances. May I have it?" 

"Yes. With much pleasure you shall have it. I know 
you would not abuse the authority." 

When I left that office I carried in my pocket written 
authority to arrest the body of Lopez, dead or alive. 

At 4 o'clock of the following morning I left my buggy 
at the livery stable and started home on horseback because 
a storm was brewing and it had become intensely dark. On 
each side of the road there was a dense forest of ferns, fern 
trees and vines. They completely covered the lava flow, 
through which the road had been built, and they concealed 
many dangerous holes and caverns in the lava. It was so 
dark one's hands could not be seen, and the horse had to be 
trusted to find the road and keep on it. 


Suddenly the animal began to buck, and he bucked as 
he had never done before. The first thought was that the 
horse had been lassoed by Lopez and life's game was up. 
Then it was thought the horse might get off the road and 
fall into some hole and kill himself and his rider. Not wish- 
ing to take such chances, I sprang from the saddle and 
landed upon a wire. From the wire I fell upon a stone in 
the road and injured my hip severely. The pain was in- 
tense. A telephone wire had fallen and it reached nearly to 
the ground, crossing the road at a right angle. The horse 
had gotten astride of the wire and as he advanced it rose 
up between his hind legs and scratched him. He bucked 
himself off of it. What horse would not have done so? 

Almost instantly the sound of the horse's hoofs as they 
pounded the smooth, hard road ceased to be heard. It 
ceased so suddenly I feared the animal had fallen by the 
roadside. I had no matches nor light of any kind, so I could 
not look for the horse. My pistol was in a pocket on the 
horn of the saddle and was gone. So I sat down in the road 
to think over the situation and rest my injured hip. 

Without even the protection of a pocketknife I was alone 
and injured, in the darkest hour of the night, in a section 
inhabited only by renegades— and I wondered why I was 
ever born. 

After the acme of pain had passed away I arose and 
limped along in the direction of the plantation, hoping some 
one would come along and take me up. I thought a great 
deal about Lopez. It was just at that dismal spot he had 
robbed a number of persons. I had no desire to meet him 
in my helpless condition, I did not even care to encounter 
a "badger," much less a burly brute like Lopez. 

Slowly and painfully limping along, I came to a place 
where the road inclined upward before me. By the light of 
the stars, which peeped from the behind the clouds for a 
moment, I could see a man silhouetted against the heavens. 
He was standing in the middle of the road. It was impos- 
sible to distinguish more than the outlines of the man, but 
I was very certain it was Lopez. What other man would be 
there at that dark hour of the night? Light could be seen 
between his legs, but his head could not be distinguished 
from his body. He was standing as motionless as a post. 
He evidently had seen me and had halted for the fray. 
Lame, suffering and without a gun, I was absolutely at the 


mercy of the man. It never occurred to me to run. I could 
not leave the road and hide in the vines, for that was a dif- 
ficult and dangerous feat even in the light of the sun. I 
determined to accept the situation with fortitude and take 
whatever was coming to me like a man. But I advanced 
upon the man, hoping for success in a little game of bluff. 
And I addressed him rather sharply : "Get out of the way, 
you scoundrel, or I will blow your brains out." 

I had summoned a clear and commanding voice, just as 
though my heart was not beating my requiem. But there 
was no response. I advanced within six feet of the man and 
issued another command. 

"Get out of the way, damn you, or I will shoot you in 
a minute." 

Still there was no response. The fellow was evidently 
calling the bluff. Perhaps he knew what had happened, 
had caught the horse, and had at tha.t moment my pistol in 
his hand. He would kill me with my own gun. What a 
harrowing thought. But there was no time for thinking. 
I must act, and act quickly. But how? I must push the 
bluff by attempting to pass. Stepping aside for that pur- 
pose I made one step forward and discovered I had been 
talking to my horse. The horse laughed. 


"Mauna Loa," the big volcano of Hawaii, was in action. 
Apparently fire was spouting from "Mokoweoweo," the sum- 
mit crater. I was at the hotel at the crater of "Kilauea," 
which is on the side of Mauna Loa, about half way between 
the summit crater and the sea. I formed a party of thirteen 
and started up the summit crater on Friday, the thirteenth 
day of the month of August. We left the hotel on such 
mules and horses as could be procured and the first night 
was spent at "timber line," the point at which vegetation 
ceases to grow. 

Coming up to so great an altitude from a section where 
perpetual summer reigns, we suffered from cold notwith- 
standing it was the month of August. On the following 
morning we started over bare rocks and were soon far above 
the clouds and vegetable life. The ascent was an almost 
continuous climb and there was nothing to indicate the 


course. There was no trail and the gaping crevices menaced 
the limbs and lives of men and beasts. Frequently an ani- 
mal would fall and have to be lifted to its feet again. The 
journey was perilous and grew more and more dangerous 
every hour we advanced. At any hour hot lava might have 
burst through the wall of the mountain, as it had been 
known to do, and swallow us up, but we did not turn back. 

The party reached the crater at 2 o'clock in the after- 
noon, and we looked down into a fiery furnace one mile wide 
and three miles long, the depth of which varies as the melted 
stone rises or fails in the hideous hole. When the crater 
fills beyond its capacity it runs over at the lowest point of 
the rim and forms a river of lava known as a flow. A flow 
finds its way toward the sea and destroys everything in its 
coures. It illuminates the heavens for miles in every direc- 
tion, and reading by its light is an easy matter miles away. 
All over a nine-mile plateau, in the center of which the cra- 
ter is situated, there were crevices filled with ice and snow 
and the thermometer indicated 22 Fahrenheit. There was 
a cutting wind blowing across the crater, but for which we 
could not have gone so near as we did. We rode within ten 
feet of the crater's edge, dismounted and sat on the very 
brink, allowing our feet to hang over the seeting, melted 
mass several hundred feet below us. 

Outspread in front and below there was a floor of melted 
stone covering the entire bottom of the crater. The lava 
moved in restless waves and swished and swashed against 
the wails of the great pot which held it within bounds. In 
the center many fountains played. Some were continuous, 
while others played incessantly. They threw a continuous 
stream of lava hundreds of feet into the air, and it came 
back like a deluge of brilliant stars. There was a continuous 
roar as of distant thunder, which, with the noise of burst- 
ing fountains and deep and constant detonations, produced 
a conglomerate sound at once weird and appalling. 

Every member of the party was impressed as never 
before in life. It is impossible to imagine anything more 
awe-inspiring, or more calculated to enforce obedience to 
the great Omnipotent One. 

In less than two hours after reaching the crater every 
member of the party was sick. We were suffering from 
"mountain sickness," and we grew steadily worse as time 
wore on. The feeling is that of seasickness, an intense 


desire to vomit, which is accompanied by the most intense 
headache man is ever called upon to endure. By 8 o'clock 
at night everyone was stretched out in the tent, most of 
them too ill to move. 

I attempted to make notes of the peculiar illness and 
found a rise of temperature in some and a quickened pulse 
in all. After the second round of pulse-taking, which had 
been made by crawling around on my hands and knees, I 
was forced to abandon the work on account of the unbear- 
able pain in my head. 

No one could eat or sleep. Even the animals refused to 
eat, and it was believed they were also suffering from the 
same disease. Every head felt as though it would burst 
upon the slightest movement. The suffering was so great 
that some of the men begged to be left at the crater to die. 
They would rather have died than move. However, we did 
not all suffer in the same degree, so when dawn came those 
of greater endurance than the rest forced the others upon 
their horses and the return trip was begun. By the time 
we had descended to a 10,000-foot altitude every man in the 
party had recovered except me. Appetites had returned 
and a stop was made for dinner. I would not stop. I could 
not eat, I was still suffering and as there were but a few 
miles more to cover in order to reach the hotel I preferred 
not breaking the journey. 

We had reached the timbered country, and while I did 
not know which trail to take I felt that my horse would take 
me safely through. I started off alone, but a Mr. Turner, 
impelled by warmth of friendship and fear that I would be 
lost, resaddled his horse and followed me. 

Through the long grass which covered the face of the 
earth wild cattle had beaten many trails. We gave up trail 
after trail for others which appealed to us and soon we real- 
ized we were lost. We had been traveling six hours and 
the hotel should have been reached long before that time. 
Suddenly we came upon a log fence. The fence was con- 
structed of whole trunks of trees, fifty to sixty feet in 
length, used as rails. The fog was so dense we could not 
see fifty feet beyond us, so it was clearly wise to follow the 
fence. But which way should we go? We could neither see 
the ocean nor the heavens, nor was there anything to indi- 
cate the proper direction. The side of the mountain was 
exceedingly undulating and in the dense forest, made denser 


by the fog, it was impossible to say whether we were going 
up, down or around the mountain. We could not even see 
that the fence was a large corral made by natives for catch- 
ing wild cattle. 

I insisted upon taking one direction and Turner insisted 
upon another, the two directions being diametrically opposed 
to each other. Hence we could not both be right. We could 
not agree, so we started off in opposite directions. Believ- 
ing the fence must lead to some habitation I said to Turner, 
"Stick to the fence and we may meet again some day." I 
was weak and wan, and I knew I would not last long if lost 
in the forest without food or drink. As I was passing along 
the fence in the direction I had selected I was thinking of 
Turner. I was deserting a friend who had deserted his 
friends for me. Was this right ? We were, in fact, equally 
deserting each other. Moved by sympathy, I turned in the 
saddle to take a final look at Turner, and I heaved a deep 
sigh of satisfaction. Turnej was following me. 

Then I experienced a cutting sense of remorse. I might 
be going wrong. I might have been too insistent in oppos- 
ing Turner and might be leading him away from succor. 
If so, he would die under the awful pangs of starvation in 
that dense forest, as others have done. 

Just at that moment, the moment when our hearts were 
heavy and sad, they were made to leap for joy. Two suc- 
cessive reports of a gun were heard quite near us and we 
knew what it meant. Searching parties had been sent to 
find us. We returned the signal and were soon mingling 
with those we had left at noon. 


A dentist, who was a stranger in Texas, was killed. Not 
a very unusual incident, but this man left a magnificent 
dental outfit, and there was neither relative nor particular 
friend to take possession of his effects. 

On the day of the funeral a suspicious-looking character 
appeared upon the streets, and after having had time to 
learn the circumstances, claimed to be a cousin of the dead 
dentist and would assume possession of his property. 

I was so fully convinced the man was an impostor I deter- 
mined to thwart him, so I planned a Kangaroo Court trial. 


I gained the confidence of the fellow and arranged a meet- 
ing at my office at 8 o'clock that night to determine proper 
methods for obtaining the dead man's effects. 

When Mr. Britton, the impostor, entered my office 
everything was in readiness for the sacrifice, and the pro- 
ceedings worked as smoothly as the wheels of time. 

"Mr. Britton," said I, "I have been thinking over this 
matter quite intently and 1 find there is a serious side to it. 
We will have to proceed with great caution. I learn there 
is already some prejudice existing and you may get into 

"What kind of trouble do you mean?" 

"Well, suppose you are suspected of trying to obtain 
goods under false pretenses ? If so, you would certainly be 

"I would like to see the man in Texas who can arrest 
me," said Britton. 

Just at the conclusion of this evidence of bravado Mr. 
Brown, the fake Sheriff, walked into the room. "Come in, 
Mr. Sheriff," said I. "I am glad to see you. Allow me to 
introduce Mr. Britton." 

The two men shook hands and the Sheriff said : "Why, 
how do you do? So you are Mr. Britton, are you?" 

"Yes. Why do you ask in that sarcastic manner?" 

"Because I have been looking for you. I have a capias 
for your arrest." 

"My arrest? Who dares accuse me? What is the 
charge ?" 

"You are charged with violating every law of the deca- 
logue, sir." 

The pretending Sheriff then drew a large bill book from 
his inside pocket and fumbled over a lot of old papers which 
had no significance other than to impress the prisoner with 
the importance of the officer. In drawing out the bill book 
the Sheriff intentionally opened his coat front so as to ex- 
pose a large pistol scabbard which, though quite empty, had 
the desired effect. Of this there was no doubt, because 
instead of making resistance, as Britton had intended me 
to believe he would do, he simply turned to me and asked, 
"What shall I do?" 

"Why, go with him, of course," said I. "What else could 
you do? But you had better see a lawyer at once. He may 
prevent you spending the night in jail." 


"You are right, sir. Will you assist me in securing one ?" 

"Cretainly I will," said I. "The court is now in session 
and if it has not yet adjourned for the night we will easily 
find a lawyer. Mr. Sheriff, may I take Mr. Britton with 

"Yes, sir; but I also must go with you. He is my pris- 

We went directly to Lawyer Walker's office and, by pre- 
vious agreement, he was in. Mr. Walker consented to take 
the case and insisted on an immediate trial. We went at 
once to the improvised court room where. the sham judge, 
an old gray-headed doctor, apparently was dismissing the 
court for the night. Lawyer Walker made his demand and 
the judge reopened the court and proceeded with the Brit- 
ton trial. 

The prosecuting attorney swore the improvised wit- 
nesses to give "incorrect" statements instead of giving "in 
correct statements," and right well they did their duty. 
Britton did not notice the catch in the oath and the result 
was perfect. It was proven, by leading the witnesses, that 
Britton was from Mississippi and had stolen a beautiful span 
of white horses ; that he had taken the life of the owner of 
the horses, and that he was in Texas under an assumed 

The trial was one of the most interesting ever listened 
to in the town, and the spectators grew in number as the 
news of the trial spread abroad. 

When the argument was concluded and the jury had 
retired I slipped Britton's hat under my coat front, allowing 
Britton to see it done, and asked permission to converse with 
Britton alone. "You have my premission," said the judge. 
"But you must remain in the court room." 

"I fear, Your Honor, that will not answer my purpose. 
My conversation must not be heard by others. May I take 
him to the 1 veranda ?" 

"Yes, you may, if you will be personally responsible for 
the prisoner's return to the court room." 

"Thank you, Your Honor. I agree to that because I do 
not believe Mr. Britton would commit an act which would 
bring reproach upon himself or upon me, even if he knew 
he was to be hanged." 

Mr. Britton and I walked out upon the veranda, which 
was twelve feet above the sidewalk. As the door was closed 


I handed him his hat and said: "That jury will hang you 
as sure as you are alive. Now is your time to run. Run as 
though the devil was after you. RUN !" 

"Thank you! Thank you!" said Britton as he seized 
his hat. 

"Don't stop to thank me ! Run ! Take wings and fly !" 

Britton did run. That is, he is supposed to have done so, 
for no one saw him run. With one leap he hit the ground. 
He bounded in the air like a rubber ball, and was gone. 

"Catch him, catch him !" I cried, and I fired every barrel 
of my revolver in the air. In an instant everybody was out 
in the street yelling and firing, but no one knew the direc- 
tion the man had taken. 

It was believed he swam the river, because he was seen 
at daylight on the next morning sixteen miles away, wet 
and with clothing badly torn by catclaws. He was never 
heard of again. 


I was called to attend an inquest held beyond a point 
where a man had been killed by negroes. The body of the 
man had been hidden by the negroes behind a log which lay 
near the road where it ran through a very deep cut. It was 
in this deep cut in the road that the murder was committed. 
The log could not be seen from the road, and the foolish 
negroes thought they would never be discovered, but they 
were apprehended and hung. 

The subject of the inquest was a small girl whom it was 
thought had been beaten to death by her father. It was 
12 o'clock at night when I rendered my decision adverse to 
the suspicion. When I was ready to return home I was 
accosted by a negro school teacher who asked permission to 
ride with me until a certain road was reached which led to 
the negro's home. .Before reaching that road I had to pass 
through the deep cut where the murder had been committed. 
When the cut was reached the moon was shining like 
a mighty chandelier, and one could easily read by its light. 
The buggy was a very light vehicle, without a top, and the 
horse was a young and spirited animal. The horse was 
walking quietly up the hill through the cut, and everything 
was as still as death, except the faintly audible sounds of 


the horse's steps in the deep, dry, sand of the road. So far 
as I knew neither of us was thinking of the dead man, or of 
spooks of any kind. But our attention was forcibly called 
to them. Suddenly there was a terrible rattling of chains 
immediately under the buggy. The horse lunged forward 
as though stung by a keen lash, and the negro seized me 
around the waist with both arms as firmly as a vise and 
exclaimed in a loud voice, "Great God, doctor! What is 

For a moment neither of us moved. The negro would 
not and I could not. The negro quivered as though in a con- 
gestive chill, and hung on like grim death, but I succeeded 
after a while in extricating myself from his grasp. The 
horse trembled, as well as the negro, and he champed his 
bit and tested the lines in anxiety to get away. I tried to 
get the negro to get out and look under the buggy, but I 
might as well have ordered a mountain to move. I gave the 
lines to the negro, got out and searched under the buggy 
and all around on the roadside for some dog with chains or 
some other thing which could account for the uncanny situa- 
tion. But nothing, absolutely nothing, could be found. 

Driving on a way, the negro's road was reached and I 
told him to get out and go home. 

"No, no, doctor! Before God, I can't do it," said the 

"Get out, you fool. There is nothing to harm you." 

With a tremor in his voice the negro said: "No, my 
dear, good doctor ! Please let me stay in the buggy. I have 
a wife and five children at home, but they won't see this 
nigger tonight." 

Believing the man was really suffering from fright, he 
was allowed to remain in the buggy. But it was only for 
a short time. The road led close to a log house on the next 
farm. The negro saw a light in the house, and he went over 
the buggy wheel like a duck on the fly and he burst through 
the door of the house without stopping to give warning of 
any kind. 

When within a few miles of the city I was driving slowly 
down a long sloping hill to a little stream which crossed the 
road. On the other side of the stream there was also a long 
slope, a counterpart of the one I was descending. I saw a 
large four-mule wagon coming down the hill in front of me. 
It was a typical country store wagon. Goods boxes were 


piled high upon it, and the driver was in plain view sitting 
upon the most forward box. I heard the rattle of the trace 
chains and saw the mules and wagon as they moved along 
the road. 

When within a few feet of the water, which was about 
an inch deep, I drove my horse to the side of the road for 
the wagon to pass, but it did not do it. It vanished like a 

I was certain I was not dreaming, because my young 
and frisky horse would not admit of that. Had I alone seen 
this phantom, and heard the chains under the buggy, I 
might have thought I had bats in my garret. Both the 
negro and the horse had heard the chains. I was not a 
believer in ghosts, so I believed there was some simple way 
of accounting for such uncanny things if one only knew how 
to do it. These occurrences have never been accounted for. 



Dr. John Hunting and I, Dr. John Hunter, made a tour 
of the western part of Texas, selling land. On one occasion 
we were directed to the home of a Mr. Williams, who lived 
on what was then the frontier. 

Williams had lived a long time in his neighborhood, and 
could be of much service to us in locating certain tracts of 

Before reaching the Williams home we met Mr. Williams 
at a fence where he was plowing in his field. Dr. Hunting 
introduced himself, and then presented me, not as a physi- 
cian, but as a young Presbyterian minister, who was an 
invalid, traveling for his health. Mr. Williams, very cour- 
teously, invited us to pass the time under his roof, but 
Hunting quickly declined, and told Williams that I had been 
ordered by my physician not to pass a night jn a house. 
However, an invitation to supper was accepted and we drove 
into the woods near the Williams home and prepared a camp. 
As soon as we had driven away from Mr. Williams I said 
to Dr. Hunting: "You have played the devil! What on 
earth did you mean by introducing me as a minister ? How 
can any sane man mistake me for an invalid?" 


"Oh, it is just a joke. Humor it," said Hunting. "We 
will be away from here tomorrow, so what difference does 
it make?" 

I believed I was equal to most occasions, but playing 
minister was a game I did not covet. I feared 1 would be 
called upon to do and say things of which I was wholly 
incapable. However, I yielded to Hunting's persuasion and 
resolved to play the part if I could. 

When we were seated at the supper table Mr. Williams 
requested me to ask a blessing. I had often done so, and 
I summoned a sanctimonious voice and proceeded: "Gra- 
cious Lord, we beseech Thee to sanctify these blessings unto 
our use. Bless each member of this family; embue them 
with the Holy Ghost, and when they come to die I pray Thee 
to ornament Thy throne with their spotless souls. This we 
ask in the name of Thy martyred Son. Amen." 

That seemed to be duly appreciated and I was as much 
relieved as though I had escaped through a fence crack 
from a maddened bull. 

After a hearty feast upon the usual preacher's diet, and 
a little general conversation, I was requested to hold family 
prayer. That was a bumper which made me see stars. I 
knew I could not "face the music," but I kept a straight face 
and promptly replied: 

"I am very sorry, my good brother, to refuse you, but 
the condition of my throat does not warrant much talking. 
My physicians have forbidden talking, and it is of no use to 
employ a physician unless you obey him. As much as I 
regret it, you will have to excuse me." 

After that I suggested no subject of conversation and 
never said more than enough to make a point clear. 

When Hunting insisted upon me playing the role of a 
minister- he did not dream we would be held within the 
shadow of the Williams cottage for two long weeks instead 
of a day, as he had suggested. But such was the case. 
Every day Hunting and Williams would go away and look 
after the land sales, and leave me at the camp to amuse 
myself as best I could. As a matter of course I could take 
no part in the business now. It had to be left entirely with 
Hunting. Many a monotonous hour was spent in camp, but 
there were pleasant hours spent at the Williams home. 

Each day I thought the next would end the farce, but 
the next only brought necessity for another until a Sunday 


came. Hunting and Williams went away just as on any 
other day, and I dined at the Williams house. After dinner 
I went out for a walk. The frontier was dangerous, so I 
took a rifle in my hands. I had gone but a little way when 
a large buck sprang from a gulch and ran straight away. 
I placed the rifle to my shoulder and shot the buck down. 
I was now in a dilemma. I had either to conceal the act and 
lose the venison, a thing of which I was passionately fond, 
or confess the sin and save the meat. Here was a minister 
of the gospel shooting deer on Sunday. What an example 
for the world! What would the people think? 

The report of the rifle had probably been* heard and I 
would not be able to contravene the facts of the case, so I 
decided to confess the deed and explain favorably to myself 
if I could. I returned to the house and told Sister Williams 
what I had done. Apologizing for the act, I told her it had 
been committed in a thoughtless moment, hence without 
volition. It was an act committed without the sanction of 
the will, so it could not be a sin. Intention makes the crime, 
so I did not believe I would be held responsible for it. 

The lady promptly agreed with me and called a young 
man to assist in bringing the deer to the house. A horse 
was saddled for the purpose and I rode him back to the 
place where the deer was killed. The deer was too large 
for any one man to handle, and it would not be wise for an 
invalid to exhibit much strength in assisting, so I threw the 
rope over the back of the horse and tied one end to the horns 
of the deer. On the other side of the horse, out of sight of 
the young man, I could exert considerable force without 
detection. The young man lifted the deer and I pulled on 
the rope. In this way it was raised to the saddle and se- 
curely tied behind it. Then in much complacence I mounted 
the old horse and started him off. The long horns of the 
buck tickled the horse in the flank and he yielded to his 
natural-born inclination. He humped his back in the middle 
like an angry cat and went up in the air. He bucked and 
bellowed like a frightened steer and the fourth time he came 
to earth he landed me, the deer and the saddle in a jumbled 
mass upon the ground. By the assistance of the young man, 
who expressed great sympathy for the invalid, I came out 
of the tangle of flesh, leather and iron without a scratch. 
The deer was then tied to the old nag's tail and dragged 


The Sunday escapade became the talk of the country, but 
the minister's infirmity secured for him the sympathy of 
the people. 

Many and varied were the remarks made, but with one 
accord the people said it was sad that so young a man 
should be in such a deporable physical condition. Really, 
I was never in better health at any time in my whole life, 
and the imagination of my sympathizers was past under- 

On the next day I borrowed a horse from Mrs. Williams 
and rode over to a country store at the suggestion of Dr. 
Hunting. As I walked through the store Dr. Hunting, who 
was waiting for the fun without ever having advised me of 
his intentions, called me over across the floor and introduced 
me to an old, gray-headed man with long white hair. 
"Brother Boyd," said he, "let me introduce my companion, 
Parson Hunter, who is also a Presbyterian preacher." 

I was astonished; shocked. "Great Lord! What will 
happen now?" I thought. But I stepped forward promptly 
and gave Brother Boyd my hand. I expressed great pleas- 
ure at meeting the venerable gentleman and invited him 
to my camp, at the same time intending to be far away 
should the invitation be accepted. 

After a few moments I was given another shock, one 
I can never forget. Brother Boyd asked me a question 
which came like a report from an unloaded gun. "My good 
brother, what synod do you belong to?" 

I knew no more about a synod than a billy-goat does 
about a gellery play, but I had to respond. 

"Oh, sir, I am not an ordained minister. I have not 
left the seminary yet." 

"Ah, indeed. What seminary are yo uattending?" 

I knew as little about Presbyterian seminaries as I did 
about the bottom of the sea, so I clasped my hands across 
my abdomen, bent my body almost double and groaned. 

"Oh, oh ! I've got it again ! Oh, oh !" 

"What is the matter, my brother? What on earth is 
the matter?" 

"It is only one of my usual pains. How I did hope to 
pass the day without them!" And I kept on groaning. 

In great sympathy, emphatically expressed, Brother 
Boyd said: "What can I do for you, brother? Let me do 


something for you. Come over to my house. It is not far 

"No, no. The best place for me is my camp. Please 
assist me to mount my horse." 

"Certainly, sir. With much pleasure I will." He took 
hold of my arm and assisted me to and upon the saddle. 
Then Mr. Boyd said: 

"I will get my horse and go with you." 

"No, indeed, you will not," said I. "I would not allow 
you to trouble yourself about me. I will be all right in a 
little while. Good-bye !" I then rode away in the direction 
of my camp still holding one hand over my abdomen and 
bending forward in the saddle. As soon as I was out of 
sight I put spurs to the horse and sent him down the road 
at a Paul Revese gait, and I laughed until I nearly fell off 
the brute. I looked back and sang: "There are times 
when you'd like to be at home." 

By agreement, the land buyers were to meet at the 
court house and get their deeds, and it was agreed also 
that I should throw off my cloak of religion at the same 
time and place in presence of Brother Boyd. 

The deeds were all signed, the money paid, and Hunting 
was sitting in the buggy ready for the grand finale. 

I told everyone present good-bye, reserving Boyd for 
the last, gave my hand to the reverend gentleman, who 
had bought a piece of land, and said to him: "Good-bye, 
my good brother. You have some damned good land," and 
here Boyd interrupted me. 

"What is this? What is this I hear?" 

"I say you have some damned good " 

"Hush, hush!" said Boyd, and he dropped my hand as 
forcibly as a man would drop a hot brick, and stood in silent 
amazement as I got into the buggy and rode away amid 
the shouts of laughter from those who had stood around 
for the purpose. 



One night I was called to see a patient who lived ten 
miles out in the country. A quarter moon was shining 
and gave just light enough to make every white thing in 
the woods look alike. 

45 • 

A road wound and twisted through the tall pines. Here 
and there a narrow streak of sand was seen in the road 
where it was much worn by one-horse country carts and 

I was riding a large, fine horse, but he was moon-eyed, 
so called because he could not see well when the moon was 
shining. I called him "Mooney" so as not to forget his 
infirmity, which to say the least of it, was very annoying 
at times. 

I had arquired the habit of sleeping in the saddle, as 
I could in that way compensate for many a sleepless hour 
spent at the bedside of some poor sufferer. 

On that particular night I took two separate naps. 
From the first nap I awoke in great trepidation. "Mooney" 
was bobbing up and down to such an extent that I was 
terribly shaken. I was almost jostled out of my wits. As 
my eyes were opened I seized the horn of the saddle and 
cried out: "Whoa! Whoa, Mooney! My God, have you 
got a fit?" He certainly seemed to have a fit. I could 
think of nothing else which would cause such queer action. 
The first instictive thought was to leap from the saddle. 
If I jumped I might be injured, yet I was afraid to remain 
in the saddle because the horse must soon fall and might 
cripple me for life. Sitting upon the back of a horse in 
a fit is by no means a nervine. When I could endure it no 
longer I leaped from the saddle and landed in the dew-wet 
grass alongside of what I had mistaken for white sand in 
the road. Instead of sand, it was a long, limbless pine log 
which had lain many years in the sun and was barkless and 
bleached white. The horse had left the road and was 
trying to walk the log. 

The road was found and "Mooney" was again headed 
for the patient's home. The sick man should have been 
reached by 5 o'clock that morning, but he was not seen 
until after 8. 

I did not know at what hour I went to sleep the second 
time, but when I awakened my horse was eating green corn 
in a fence corner and the sun was shining in my face. 


I was visiting the widow of a family named Snow. Dur- 


ing the visit Billie Snow, one of the grown sons of the 
widow, killed a neighbor named Snap Bean. The killing 
was done with a small pocketknive used in self-defense. 
Though conscious of right, yet fearing results even 
though in the hands of the officers, Billie made an escape. 
He crossed the Colorado River, which was quite near by, 
and entered the dense forest which covered miles of coun- 
try on that side. 

The Beans were large cattle owners and had at their 
command at all times a great number of men, both good 
and bad. In less than an hour a hundred men were on 
Billie's trail, swearing to kill him on sight. He was aware 
of this, but must have food, and must take chances in pro- 
curing it. Having withstood the cries of an empty stomach 
sufficiently long, he got down on his hands and knees at 
midnight and entered his home gate. He passed several 
of his enemies, as he grunted like an old hog carelessly 
looking for food along the ground. It was too dark for the 
men to see that his feet stuck out behind him. 

After entering the gate, which fortunately was open, 
he passed under the house, lifted a loose board in the floor 
of the kitchen and entered the building. His mother was 
on the alert, as mothers always are, and she gave him food 
and drink. She arranged a sack of things to eat and he 
tied it over his stomach. Then he got down on his hands 
and knees again and passed out by the seekers of his life 
and returned to his refuge in the forest. 

Before leaving the kitchen he exacted of his mother 
the promise that she would request me to visit him at 12 
o'clock of the next night at a spring six miles down in the 
forest, and dress his wounded hand. His hand had been 
badly cut in the fray, and having no attention was in dan- 
ger of blood poison. 

I recognized the request as either the result of extreme 
necessity, grave apprehension or a violent presumption of 
friendship. I realized the perils of such an act, but I 
recalled the many evidences of friendship manifested by 
the family, and decided to attempt the hazardous journey. 

The night was very dark and a person could be seen 
but a little way off, nevertheless the undertaking was such 
as to require some determination to accomplish it. The 
whole country around was filled with desperate men — men 
who would not hesitate to take the life of anyone caught 


shielding the man they sought. 

At 11 o'clock I passed out of the house, armed with a 
dark lantern, a surgeon's pocket case, a Colt's revolver and 
a haversack well filled with good things for the inner man. 
I crossed the backyard and entered a large cane field, from 
which I emerged at a point very near the forest. On enter- 
ing the forest I breathed easier. I believed I would be less 
liable to collide with the enemies of my friend in the thick 
wood. But alas, how false was my reasoning. Just as 
I was consoling myself with the thought I saw three 
objects which I supposed to be men. They were not fifty 
feet away. I was not sure they were looking toward me, 
but I was sure I saw them move. A moment more and all 
doubt was removed. One of them hailed me. 

"Who goes there?" 

I did not reply. I was just at the limit of vision in 
the darkness and I knew it would require a second to dis- 
appear. It required but one strong, long leap and I leaped 
for my life. I darted into the brush like a frightened deer 
and I changed the direction of travel at the same time. As 
I made my leap the hissing of flying bulets and the sharp 
crack of pistols lent impetus to my fast receding form. 
In a moment I felt that I was safe; safe from men who 
seemed anxious to stain their hands in blood. 

The signals agreed upon while Billie was in the kitchen 
with his mother were a low, soft whistle which was to be 
answered by the hoot of an owl. 

When I believed I was near the spring I whistled. But 
the owl did not hoot. What a dreadful feeling of anxiety 
crept over me ! I felt so alone and so helpless. Had they 
caught Billie? If so, had they murdered him? Could 
there have been a mistake about the place of meeting, or 
of the signals? Had I reached the right spot for whis- 
tling? These and many were the self -propounded ques- 
tions which arose to my mind as I stood alone in the dark 
wood with dreaded enemies all around me. Who knew but 
that Billie had been killed? Who knew but that his dead 
body was not at that very moment lying near my feet? 
Many and varied were the things which might have caused 
the failure to hoot. Dead or alive, hd must be found, and 
the reason for not responding to the whistle must be 

With much caution I moved deeper into the forest and 


whistled again. This time I was startled. The hoot fol- 
lowed immediately and was so near I could almost feel 
Billie's warm breath upon my ear. The imitation was so 
perfect it was difficult to believe it was not the hoot of the 
real old bird of ill omen; the bird so dreaded because of 
the superstition which surrounds it. 

A cup of water was gotten from the spring and we 
stooped down very near to each other, face to face. We 
drew Billie's blanket over our heads and close around us 
to prevent the light being seen when the lantern was 
brought into use. 

The wound extended entirely across the hand, and the 
bleeding had been stopped by placing a piece of leather 
pocketbook over it. The hand had been closed tightly 
down upon the leather and had remained so since the hour 
of the cutting. 

When half of the necessary stitches had been taken 
in the wound the solder of the lantern melted away and 
the oil ran out. It promptly took fire and burned in a big, 
bright blaze. Immediately we sprang to our feet and 
threw the blanket off. That exposed the light to any 
person who might be around and we knew full well that 
anyone who saw it would shoot at it. I threw the blanket 
over the flame and smothered it. Then we moved several 
rods deeper into the forest and the remaining stitches 
were taken in the dark. 

Just before daylight I reached my room and went to 
bed, feeling I had done my duty to a friend. 

On the following day I attempted to discharge my 
pistol that it might be freshly loaded, but not a barrel 
would shoot. It was evident that had I attempted to defend 
myself with that pistol I would have been committing 


A brother of mine was more fond of hunting than I, 
and was pretty nearly as ready for a hazard as I. We 
ventured an expedition on an uninhabited island fifteen 
miles from the mainland in an eighteen-foot canoe. We 
landed in safety and spent several days of pleasure roam- 
ing the island over, but found no game. 

The wind arose almost to a gale and forced us to remain 


upon the island many more days than were anticipated. 

We consumed all of our food and had not been suc- 
cessful in the pursuit of fowl or beast of any character 
whatever with which we could replenish our larder. 

The storm raged and we grew hungry. Three days of 
diligent search resulted in absolute failure to discover any- 
thing which could be utilized as food. 

Hunger began to pinch severely and we decided it would 
be no worse for us to starve to death in the woods of the 
island than at our camp, besides there was nothing to be 
gained at the camp, while it was possible some means- of 
success might be reached by continuing the search. We 
directed the little negro boy whom we had taken along 
to do the chores of the camp, to keep constantly on the 
fire a pot of boiling sea water, and we agreed to leave the 
camp in different directions and never return unless some- 
thing for food was found. 

We shook hands, embraced each other and bade fare- 
well, because neither of us expected ever to see the other 
again. It was a sad moment, but each forced a cheerful 
smile on parting by way of bracing up the other. 

I had proceeded but a little way when I discovered 
a movement in the tall marsh grass which grew close by 
the waterside. I was afraid to try to learn what was caus- 
ing the grass to move. Afraid it might be some kind of 
an animal which would elude me. I did not care what it 
was. Anything from a rat to an elephant would suit me. 
A polecat would have been highly appreciated. Meat was 
what I wanted and meat was what I must have. I cocked 
both barrels of my gun and I fired both at the same time 
directly at the moving grass. 

Trembling with the weakness of hunger, and fearing 
I had missed the mark, I ran to the spot and found, to my 
great gratification, I had killed a hungry old sow. 

The most promtply obtainable thing was the liver, a 
thing I had always loathed. But I had drawn my pocket- 
knife as I ran and I cut out a part of the liver and started 
to the camp. My brother, having heard the shot, came to 
me and in a short space of time we were ravenously devour- 
ing half -cooked liver, the sweetest morsel it had ever been 
our privilege to eat. At our leisure we secured the rest 
of the animal, upon which we subsisted during the next 
three days. 

On the third day after the liver feast the storm had 


calmed to a marked degree and we put our lanterns, bed- 
ding — in fact, all of our belongings — into the boat and 
started home in the afternoon. Tide and wind were against 
us and progress was very slow. We had hoped to reach 
the shore by the end of the afternoon, but it seemed an 
impossibility. The night came on and was very dark. We 
battled with the waves until our strength was exhausted. 
We could no longer wield the oars with force and the tide 
was taking us out to sea. 

I saw a light in the distance and it proved to be a pass- 
ing steamboat. Instantly I recalled the fact that I was 
a Mason and it was more than probable there was a Mason 
on that boat. It would, indeed, be unusual not to find a 
Mason in a bunch of men of sufficient numbers to man 
a ship. At any rate, I caused that ship to turn her course, 
slow down, take us in and land us safely upon the shore. 
Of course you wonder how I did it. All that I will tell you 
of the how it was done is that, any Mason could tell you 
if he would. 


I went out on the Staked Plains of Texas for a hunt, 
accompanied by Dr. Bower of Alabama. We were strenu- 
ously advised against the expedition, as wild Indians were 
still in the country and the undertaking was a dangerous 
one. Two months previously a party of eight had under- 
taken the same expedition and not one of them ever re- 
turned. However, this did not deter Dr. Bower or me. We 
crossed the Colorado River and went into Tom Green 
County, which was at that time four hundred miles long 
and extended to the Mexican border. The country was 
filled with wild animals, and panthers and Mexican lions 
screamed about our camp every night, while wolves rent 
the air with their bowlings and robbed us of many an 
hour's sleep. 

We camped one night about fifty miles beyond the most 
western settlement. Our tent was at the foot of a flat top 
hill, which lay between streams, just at the confluence of 
Brady Creek and a tributary stream from the south. The 
hill pointed at the meeting of the two waters and was cov- 
ered with tall grass. The tent was on the side of the 
tributary stream and just across the hill on Brady Creek 


there was a clump of sycamore and elm trees. On the 
other side of Brady Creek from the clump of trees there 
was a vast valley of sunflowers extending to the rising 
hills beyond. 

Late in the afternoon I picked up my rifle and walked 
away, saying "I will go over to the clump of trees and 
bring back a turkey for breakfast." I crossed over the hill 
and began the descent toward the trees. I had gone but 
a few feet down when I heard a rustle in the underbrush 
which grew thick beneath the trees. 

There was a simultaneous "Ough" which came from 
the brush, and brought me to a sudden stand. Immedi- 
ately a group of Indians sprang to their feet. My feelings 
at that moment can never be accurately described. My 
surprise was truly great. My scalp contracted as though 
under the influence of some powerful astringent. I had 
but the one gun and the one cartridge, but I threw the 
gun to my shoulder and fired. As I did this I ran back 
over the hill, and it seemed that every Indian was armed 
and fired at me. Just as I reached the point where the 
descent began I fell, and that is perhaps what saved my life. 

Dr. Bower, hearing the rapid firing, knew there was 
trouble and he came to the rescue as quickly as possible, 
bringing every gun in the camp. He met me at the middle 
of the hilltop and we breathlessly awaited the coming of 
the redskin foe. There was no time for planning; we sim- 
ply acted upon thoughts which had frequently presented 
since we left our homes and. friends to risk 'our lives in a 
country infested with wild Indians and ferocious beasts. 

There was but one of two things to do. We must 
stand, fight and take the possible chance of life, or show 
the white feather and die like dogs at the hands of pitiless 
brutes. Every moment we expected to see the red faces 
pop up from behind the hill, and we stood ready to give 
battle at the first glimpse of their heads. Each moment 
seemed a day and it seemed the day would never end. 

Just as the sun was fading out of sight we saw a group 
of men emerge from the sunflowers, on the other side of 
the Valley, and disappear in the distance beyond the hills. 
We then returned to our camp and entered the tent, expect- 
ing to be fired upon at any hour of the night. We made 
no fire, ate* no supper, and we laid down with our clothes 
on and our guns in our hands. We dared not sleep and we 


passed the hours in silence until about 4 o'clock in the 

At that hour the tent door opened and a dark object 
stood squarely in it. In an instant there was a deafening 
report of a rifle and the intruder fell directly into the bed 
between us. Quicker than it can be told, we were on the 
outside of the tent. We were not expecting company with 
whom we cared to spoon, so we gave up the whole bed. 
We just rolled out under the sides of the tent and met at 
the back of it. 

At the dawn of day Dr. Bower peeped under the tent, 
and he saw a large black bear stiff in death in the middle 
of the bed. He had shot the bear through the heart, but 
did not until that moment suspect the deadliness of his aim. 

A bullethole was found through my hat and one through 
my shirt, under the right arm, which showed how near 
I had come to answering the last call. 

A trail of blood showed the directions the Indians had 
taken, and it was believed one of them had been carried 
away, as was their custom when one is either killed or 
seriously wounded. The one shot prevented an attack 
upon our camp that night, and probably saved our lives. 



The widow Nelson and Miss Higgins of San Francisco 
explored a cave in company with Joe Kopp and my- 
self. That particular cave was in the middle of a lava 
flow which was half a mile wide and perhaps thousands of 
years old. It was known as the Sacrificial Cave and most 
persons were afraid to go into it. It was filled with skele- 
tons and tradition said tons of blood had been spilt in it. 

The entrance was a large opening about twenty feet 
wide, as many deep, and dropped straight down to a very 
rough floor. The little party reached the floor by means 
of ropes. This, the first room, extended some fifty feet 
underground and inclined toward the sea. The ceung was 
twelve feet high. In the center of the large room there 
was a pile of rocks four feet high, four feet wide, six feet 
long, and capped by a smooth flat rock which covered the 
entire top accurately. Upon this flat rock many a person 
had yielded up the ghost to some imaginary, or to some 
flesh and blood god. The back wall did not appear to be 


natural. It was evidently a work of art and the party 
found a concealed passway through it, very near the floor. 
The passage was closed by an immense rock which required 
the combined strength of the entire party to dislodge it. 

I led the party through the passway, which was thirty 
feet long and barely large enough to* admit one person at 
a time in a stooping posture. In concealed apartments on 
either side of the passway there were many curiosities, 
such as beads, belts, etc., which were added to my collec- 
tion. There were also vast quantities of human bones in 
each of the rooms. In many localities in the cave there 
were great piles of crumbling bones. Occasionally a sin- 
gle skeleton would be found. Some were in plain view 
upon the floor and others were hidden in secret crannies 
high up on the walls where it would seem impossible to 
take a corpse. 

About a quarter of a mile from the mouth of the cave, 
in the center of the floor, there was a large rock which 
resembled a turtle and it was carved all over with hiero- 
glyphics. To constitute hieroglyphics, characters must 
have a significance, and it was believed these had, as they 
were seen in several other caves, many of them being 
exactly alike. They pre-dated the knowledge of man, and 
the only tradition concerning them was that they were 
the writings of conjurers and sorcerers in the years of 
superstition, long since passed. 

Farther along in the cave we came to a corpse in 
dugout— a coffin made of the trunk of a tree of hardwooc 
which had endured for ages, but it was now advanced in 
decay and only required a jolt to crumble it to fragments, 
if not to dust. I gave the coffin a kick, unseen by tht 
women, and it fell to pieces, corpse and all. The candles 
carried by Kopp and I were instantly blown out, and each 
woman uttered a lively scream and grabbed her man. As 
it was not very pleasant to be seized by a screaming woman, 
the candles were religted and the screaming ceased. 

When we had sufficiently amused ourselves we returnee 
to the mouth of a cave. There I found a vertebra of 
jackass. Unobserved, I penciled a nose, mouth, eyes and. 
ears upon the smooth articular surface of the bone, and it 
resembled an Episcopal priest to a very comical extent. 
I stooped down and pretended to pick it up at the moment 
and proclaimed the finding of a Hawaiian god. Hawaiian 


gods were scarce and of high price, hence the find was a 
rare and valuable one. 

The ladies became wild with excitment over it and 
after many expressions of admiration and desire for owner- 
ship I promised to ship the god by express to them at their 
home in San Francisco. 

Every person met by the ladies afterward was told of 
the valued possession and the expressions of countenance 
worn by the women told of their delight more forcibly than 
words could express. 

They promised to write, but they never did. The horse 
laugh they got on exhibiting their Hawaiian god in San 
Francisco must have induced feelings they did not care to 
express upon paper. 

Twenty- -Third 


There was a beautiful girl living in the country. Her 
home was two miles from the main road which led to a 
famous fish pond. I had not yet gradauted at medicine 
and was attending college, but I became deeply infatuated 
with the girl and was frequently in her company. 

One afternoon I took her to the fish pond. The horse 
was tied to a tree. We took a boat and were soon lost to 
view among the trunks of lofty water-born trees. The pond 
occupied many acres of ground and was thickly studded 
with tall cypress trees which were draped with long wav- 
ing gray moss that cast spooky shadows upon the dark 
water. Ducks, water turkeys, comorants and cranes of 
every description squawked and flitted here and there both 
upon the trees and upon the water. The unique surround- 
ings produced the weird state in which one feels at the 
same time spooky and romantic. 

We came to the trunk of a fallen tree so inclined that 
a person could walk upon it. The limbs were laden with 
beautiful moss and the girl expressed a desire for some 
of it. With the agility of youth I sprang upon the log and 
secured the moss. But when I attempted to return to the 
boat the lady gave a strong stroke of the paddel and sent 
it far out of my reach. 

"Now, if you were my lover," she said, "I would hold 
you where you are until you said 'Yes.' " 

"How romantic that sounds. I am your lover. Now 


will you let me get into the boat and prove it ?" 

"Yes/ she said, and the boat was placed at my feet. 

When I was safely seated in the boat I dared her to 
walk upon the log as I had done. 

"I am as active and fearless as you are, sir. Take the 
boat to the tree and I will convince you." 

As nimbly as a gazelle she sprang upon the log and was 
ready in a moment to return to the boat with a handful 
of the moss. But it was my time now. I had gotten her 
on the log for the purpose. "Now," said I, you will say 
'Yes' to me or drown in an attempt to swim to the shore. 
Will you marry me? Say 'Yes' or I will leave you where 
you are." 

She looked me in the eye as though in a deep brown 
study and after a seemingly long pause she spoke: 

"Are you in earnest ? Do you mean what you say ?" 

"Do I not look it? Do I not act it? Does not every 
word I utter carry its full meaning? Of course I mean it. 
Say 'Yes' and forever drive from my anxious breast that 
constant longing which is ever present in a single man's 
breast. Get into the boat and name a day. Name an hour. 
The earlier the better." 

"Your manner reassures me, and I say 'Yes.' " 

"Then name an hour." 

"Anytime would suit me," she said. "I would say' 
right now." 

"Right now is impossible, since we have no license and 
no minister, but we may drive immediately to town and 
get them." 

We started for the shore and I was so excited I jammed 
the boat into many a tree. But that was no surprise. I 
could not keep my eyes off of the girl. She was short, 
plump, had dark hair, ravishing black eyes and was built 
like a quail. With a fair complexion and rosy cheeks she 
resembled a rich, ripe peach just ready to drop, and I 
imagined myself holding the basket into which the peach 
was to fall. 

We started to the town to secure the license and there 
were but a few words spoken. I did a lot of thinking and 
she was as silent as a budding rose. 

Mentally, 1 recalled the fact that my mother disliked 
the girl because she had attended a dance within two 
months of a brother's burial, and my father agreed with 
my mother. Certainly neither parent would rejoice at the 


act. Madam Rumor said she had been engaged before, 
and she might have been kissed by some other fellow, in 
which event I would not want her for a wife. The more 
I reflected upon the grave question the greater grew my 
desire to recant. What does a medical student want with 
a wife, anyway? What could I do with her? It was sure 
I could not take her to my old home, and I had no other 
place for her. Indeed, I was up again a difficult propo- 

We were approaching a road which led to her home, so 
I offered her the privilege of driving. When she had taken 
the reins I told her if she drove beyond the road which 
led to her home I would believe she was in earnest. To 
my dismay she drove on past the road as though it had 
no existence. I fully believed she would turn into the 
road, but I was grasping at a straw. I felt like a man 
who is about to be drowned. 

The city church steeples were now in sight and the 
town clock was striking the hour of seven. Soon it would 
be too late for me or her to change mind and not become 
the talk of the town. We caught sight of the court house 
where the license office was located and a chill ran down 
my back. I stopped the horse still in the road, screwed up 
more courage than I dreamed I possessed, and said to her: 

"Do you not think we are a little hasty? Would you 
not prefer waiting a while, perhaps a week?" In a sub- 
dued tone she replied: 

"Just as you like, sir." 

That settled the matter and we were soon in her father's 
parlor, where we sat until midnight, almost in silence. We 
just gazed at the fire and listened in deep sighs as they 
came from each other's throbbing breast. 

Long before the week of waiting was over I discovered 
she was engaged to six other deluded lads who were expect- 
ing to reap the fond embraces of the dizzy damsel. 

I immediately resigned from the club. 



The road which leads from Hilo to the Hawaiian volcano 

Kilauea is thiry miles long and is a veritable dream. It 

winds in and out of gulches, through dense forests and 

rises with a 6 per cent grade nearly all the way. It was 


constructed by the Government at a cost of many thou- 
sand dollars per mile. Nature has hedged this road with 
wild flowers and fruits which bloom and bear all the year 
around. Roses, belladonna, blossoms, honeysuckle and 
other flowers fill the air with a mingled aroma, and the 
eye feasts upon the richest of green foliage. The thick 
forest of tall trees is made denser by the fern trees and 
the ie-ie vine which reaches to the tops of tall trees, com- 
pletely enveloping them, and saps them of life. 

So tropical is the scenery along this road that one ex- 
pects to see monkeys hanging by their tails; parrots flit 
from limb to limb, or serpents squirming among the 
branches of the trees. One listens for the squawk of large 
birds and the twitter of small ones, but is disappointed. 
There is neither a wild monkey nor a parrot nor a snake 
upon either of the islands of the group, and the absence 
of small birds is marked. 

The Volcano Hotel is situated at the very brink of the 
crater. All around about and under the house sulphur 
steam escapes from fissures in the ground. It is from 
those that sulphur steam is piped into the bath room, where 
natural sulphur baths are taken for the cure of disease as 
well as for pleasure. From every front window of the hotel 
a good view of the crater can be had, though but few visi- 
tors are satisfied until they go down into it. 

Kilauea, the large crater, is three miles in diameter, , 
nine hundred feet deep, and holds the lesser crater within 
its bounds. The lesser crater is just a great hole, half 
a mile in diameter, which seems to drop down through the 
floor of the large crater. 

One descends, either on foot or on horseback, along a 
zigzag trail made for the purpose. When the floor is 
reached a trail is found which leads to the small crater 
and is marked by whitewash on large stones. There are] 
no footprints. The floor is formed of lava, cooled into 
a crust which rests upon the melted stuff below, and no J 
one knows how thick the crust it. The floor is as irregular 
in its convolutions and depressions as the face of a raging 
sea, and it rises gradually toward the small crater. The 
small crater is called Halemaumau, which in the Hawaiian 
tongue means House of Ever-Living Fire. It is constantly 
aglow and is frequently disturbed by violent action. The 
large crater is only in a molten state at intervals of years. 
The process of cooling has riven the floor of the crater 


with large and small cracks, and long before Halemaumau 
is reached one sees hot sulphur steam and apparently 
tongues of fire leaping from them. Many of the cracks 
are so hot one cannot stand near them without burning 
one's shoes. They have to be crossed by a quick jump to 
avoid inhaling the hot steam which is pungent with sulphur. 

At periods of time varying in length "Madame Pele," 
the goddess of fire, who, according to Hawaiian lore, lives 
in and controls the volcano, becomes angry and spits her 
wrath through this mightly hole in the earth with hellish 
effect. The great pit fills to overflowing with molten stone 
which splashes and roars, and terror fills the hearts of the 
superstitious. Sometimes Halemaumau assumes a state 
of semi-quietness when full. An idea of it may be gained 
by comparing it to an inverted saucer. The little rim upon 
which the saucer sits when upright represents when in- 
verted the rim of Halemaumau when full. The rim of 
the small crater, distinctly elevated above the floor of the 
large crater, is formed by lava cooled by contact with the 
air as it rises out of the mouth of the crater. Thus it 
forms its own barrier to its overflow. There is a constant 
heating and cooling of the surface of the pit, and it changes 
from the various colors of red to white and back again to 
red. This occurs in streaks which, criss-crossing and paral- 
leling, reminds one of a million of fiery serpents writhing 
in a jumbled mass. The lava hisses and sizzles, and burst- 
ing now and then with a loud report open fountains which 
send columns of melted stone hundreds of feet into the 
air. The glow, as seen from the hotel at night, interrupted 
by a play of lava fountains, is entrancing. Imagine a rocket 
many millions of times larger than any you have ever seen 
and you will conceive something of an idea of a fountain 
in a volcano. Notwithstanding the formidable appearance 
of Halemaumau when full, one may approach from the 
windward near enough to stir the lava with a stick. The 
stick will burn as tissue paper over a spirit lamp. 

East of the volcano it rains nearly every day, while on 
the west it seldom rains at all. 

Beyond the volcano the road leads in part over bare 
lava, a flow over which vegetation has not yet grown. In 
such sections there is no digging of postholes or graves. 
Posts are stood upon end and rocks piled around them until 
they stand. Where the natives did not deposit their dead 
in caves they laid them upon the ground and built graves 


by piling rocks upon and around them until the corpses 
were several feet under rock. The rocks were usually 
evenly laid and formed an oblong square four feet high, 
four feet wide and six feet long. They were made amply 
large to prevent disturbance by wild dogs. 

I visited Kilauea one night in company with two other 
men. Everything seems exaggerated at night, and distant 
objects seem much nearer than they really are. Heated 
points show more distinctly, contrasts are greater and the 
yawning cavern seems more formidable by starlight than 
by the light of the sun. 

We reached the little crater and sat on the very brink, 
allowing our feet to hang over the roaring, bubblinb, melted 
stone fifteen hundred feet below us, and we enjoyed the 
most wonderful, awe-inspiring scene of all God's creations. 

Growing tired and sleepy we laid down and were soon 
lost to all the discomforts of our stony bed. We did not 
awake until aroused by the sun, which was shining hot 
upon us. We had slept withing six feet of the fiery hole, 
at the bottom of which there was a boiling, bubbling mass 
of melted stone, which surely can be of no less heat than 
the place we all so dread. 

Upon arising we extinguished our lanterns and started 
across the floor of the large crater toward the hotel. We 
noticed a large crack which formed a complete crescent 
around the place where we had spent the night. Each end 
of the crescent crack broke into the rim of the little crater. 

Long before reaching the wall of the large crater, up 
which one must climb to reach the hotel, we heard a long, 
loud roar; a terrible, continued rumbling which echoed and 
re-echoed and terrified us with its hellish reverberations. 
Thinking the crater was performing some wonderful feat, 
we went back to it. 

When we reached the crater we found the whole of the 
crescent upon which we had passed the night, a part of 
the time in oblivious slumber, had slipped its moorings and 
was fifteen hundred feet below and melting in the heated 
liquid stone. 

We looked down over the rugged cliff, far down into 
the horribly heated abyss, shuddered and thanked God for 
our escape from a dreadful death. 




At a hotel in Fort Worth, then a town of six hundred 
inhabitants, there was a dance given in honor of Dr. Hunt- 
ing and myself. The crowd was slow in gathering and 
when a few couples had arrived I planned a joke on them. 
I asked Hunting to tell the crowd that I, Hunter, was a 
fine fellow but had fits, and at times was very dangerous. 
However,- it was easy to escape me, as premonitory symp- 
toms always foretol the coming of an attack. Dr. Hunting 
told them that when an attack was coming on I would 
rise from my seat, turn around and sit down again with- 
out ever making a break in conversation. After a third 
turn I would become wild and scatter persons and things 
to the four winds. 

Through sympathy, or curiosity, the crowd gathered 
around me on one side of the room. Suddenly I jumped 
up, turned around and sat down again without appearing 
to realize what I had done. In a moment some of the crowd 
passed over to the other side of the room. In a few min- 
utes I arose and turned again. Quickly everyone left me 
except two ladies who were seated immediately next to me, 
one on each side. They exhibited dire distress, but I held 
them by not lagging in conversation. I arose for my third 
turn and the two ladies went like frightened swallows to 
the outer door. The rest of the crowd followed in reckless 
haste, almost climbing over each other in the flight. 

For an instant I was the sole occupant of the ballroom, 
but a burst of hearty laughter brought the crowd back. 
Some took the joke kindly, others laughed hysterically, 
while others were hard to convince that such a joke, with- 
out foundation in fact, could be played with such a straight 

A few nights after leaving Fort Worth we camped in 
the brush which grew at the side of a flowing stream, and 
we made our bed underneath the buggy to avoid the dew. 

About 2 o'clock in the morning we were aroused from 
a deep sleep by the sound of horses' hoofs. The clatter 
came nearer and nearer and grew louder as it approached. 
We concluded a herd of stampeded horses was, passing, 
but as we were a little way from the road and our animal 
was chained to a tree, we felt quite safe. 

few embers of the campfire still showed the situation 


of the buggy, and just as the wildly rushing herd dashed 
into the crossing of the creek the Indian warwhoop rang 
clear and loud upon the chilled air of the night. Along 
with the whoop there came a rain of bullets and arrows, 
and we glided into the thickest of the brush near by. 

On returning to the buggy, after all danger had passed, 
we found one spoke of a hind wheel had been shattered 
by a bullet and an arrow had pinned the blankets together 
in the middle of the bed. 

Notwithstanding the danger had passed, we did not 
sleep any more that night. 

Twenty -Sixth 

While living in Hilo, Hawaii, I made a trip around the 
crater of Kilauea with Sam Walace, Nicolas Dutro and 
Thomas Mallard. When we reached the sand flow on the 
opposite side of the crater from the hotel, which tradition 
says blew out of the crater like a great flying river and 
buried a wing of Kameamea's army, we found footing ex- 
ceedingly difficult and dangerous. The sand is light, soft 
and fluffy, being of pulverized pumice. The sand flow- is 
two miles wide and is riven with cracks, both large and 
small. They diverge from the crater like spokes from the 
hub of a wheel and they vary in width from an inch to 
many feet. Many of the narrow cracks are covered with 
sand and could not be seen. Frequently the foot of a horse, 
or both front or hind feet, would slip into one of these 
hidden cracks and frighten himself and his rider dread- 
fully. The animal would lunge and struggle until he pulled 
himself out of it, but the uncertainty of success would try 
the nerves of man and beast. 

Hot sulphur fumes blew up through certain places in 
the cracks, so pungent as to be painful to noses and eyes, 
Even the horses realized the peril, for though they were 
willing, spirited brutes, they practically refused to continue 
the journey. Find it so difficult to get them along, each 
one was tied securely to the saddle of the other and they 
were left. We proceeded on our treacherous route on foot. 
Time has proven the tradition of Kameamea's army 
and the sand flow quite true, for erosion has exposed exten- 
sive fields of bleaching bones. Upon nearing the vast and 
ancient sepulchre the scene of the soft, smooth sand is 


changed into that of a gruesome sight. The different bones 
of the human frame could be recognized by their exposed 
points. Arm and leg bones protruded many inches above 
the surface, and hip bones, skulls, ribs and backbones could 
be plainly seen. Teeth and nose and eyesockets peeped 
through the sand and suggested the presence of spooks. 
The scene produced a sensation at once uncanny and chill- 
ing. The bleached bones, in contrast with the dark brown 
sand, suggested a field of mushrooms ready for the harvest. 

At length we reached a long and wide earthquake crack. 
Doubtless it antedated the sand flow by many years. Like 
all cracks of the kind, it was wider at some points than at 
others. At certain places it could be easily crossed while 
at others it was not less than a hundred feet wide and 
apparently bottomless. 

By means of jutting crags we went down into the crack. 
We jumped from ledge to ledge and assisted each other by 
holding a hand or foot as suited our convenience at the 
time. When we had gotten down about four hundred feet 
into the crack we passed under rocks which had become 
jammed at a narrow point of the crack and had closed it 
from that point upward. Dislodgements of time had filled 
in from above and formed a complete bridge many feet 
thick. Going on down underneath this bridge we were 
soon where the sun never shines and all was blackest night. 
We lighted our candles and proceeded on down, going far- 
ther and farther from the light of day all the while. 

Finally we were stopped by a precipitous decline where 
further progress was too hazardous by dim candlelight. 
We had reached the edge of a bottomless abyss. There 
dropped down before us a great and frightful hole as black 
as night and nothing could be seen beyond it. Now it was 
seen that further progress was impossible, lights or no 
lights, for there was no way to pass around the ugly hole. 
It occupied the entire space across the crack. Rocks of 
fifty pounds or more in weight were rolled into the cavern 
and no sound returned, notwithstanding every ear was 
strained in the endeavor to hear them strike somewhere. 

Of course this necessitated our return, and we started 
away fully determined to return with lanterns and ropes 
and descend to the full depths of the frightful pit, if it was 
possible to do so. 

The return journey was an exhausting task. We 
climbed under great difficulties, expecting momentarily to 


see the light of day, but the darkness hung on. We were 
puzzled and greatly alarmed. We feared we had, in some 
mysterious way, lost our course and were entombed in the 
bowels of the earth forever. Life would be a burden under 
such circumstances, but fortunately it would not last long. 

After all, what difference does it make where a man 
dies? He has but one time to die, and an early demise 
sometimes averts a deal of pain and sorrow, When a man 
is dead he is soon forgotten, even though imperishable 
marble indicates the fact that he once lived. Be this as 
it may, but few are ever ready to go; and it was certain 
neither of us were ready, or willing to go. We tried hard 
to discover a key to the trying situation and to devise 
means of deliverance from our lamentable situation. 

Suddenly there was a startled exclamation by Mallard. 
"Ye gods, come here, boys!" 

He had found our empty lunch sack which had been 
left at the point where we had entered the crack. It was 
indeed a joyous find, for by it we knew that we were upon 
the surface of the earth again. But we were puzzled by 
the darkness. Neither of us had a watch, and we never 
dreamed it was night until the clouds thinned away a little, 
a few stars twinkled for a moment and a pale moon was 
seen sinking in the distant sea. What hour of the night 
it was then, or what time we had spent in the bowels of 
the earth, no one could tell. Just at that moment we caught 
sight of the light on the flagpole at the hotel, which was 
evidently directly across the crater. By means of this light 
we determined upon a course and started to the hotel. In 
an airline the distance was four miles, but over the tortuous 
course we would have to take it was at least three times as 

It began to rain and the wind blew out our candles and 
it became at once intensely dark. No wood for torches 
could be found upon the bare lava flow and no candle could 
live in the strong wind. Walking in the dark was exceed- 
ingly dangerous, for the surface was riven with cracks into 
which one might fall and disappear forever. 

The storm brewed afresh, but as there is never a situa- 
tion so grave but that there is something to be thankful 
for, we gave thanks for the repeated flashes of lightning 
which aided us in choosing the way. The moon was gone 
and all stars were hidden from sight. The angry black 
clouds hung low and hugged the earth like the somber drap- 


ings of a bier. All at once the clouds seemed to burst and 
sent down a deluge which seemed to wet us to the very 
bone. Notwithstanding this, we proceeded slowly on, often 
getting down to feel the way with our hands. 

After a time the rain ceased and we reached the tim- 
bered section, where we provided ourselves with torches. 
But the torches were of no value in showing the direction 
we should go. We completely lost our reckoning and after 
a consultation it was decided we would remain right where 
we were for the remainder of the night. Proceeding far- 
ther in the darkness, we might be forever lost in the dense 

A large fire was made of fallen logs, around which we 
sat contentedly talking and drying our clothes. But this 
was too good to continue. The rain began again and it 
came down in torrets, such as only Hawaii can produce. 
It wetted us thoroughly again, and put out every spark 
of our fire. Then we sat upon the the charred logs in the 
dark — wet, cold, sleepy, tired and hungry — and prayed for 
the coming of the dawn. 

The first rays of light from the rising sun filled us 
with gratitude and disgust. We were within two hundred 
feet of the hotel fence. 



There is a cave on the Colorado River called "McCree 
Cave." A crowd, of which I was a member, visited the 
cave in two large wagons. On fording the river, which was 
not more than three feet deep, a wagon was stopped by 
stones over which it could not pass without assistance. 
I knew what was necessary, so I leaped into the water and 
called upon the other men to follow me. By the combined 
strength of man and beast the wagon was taken on across. 

The crossing was just above some dangerous rapids 
which terminate in a waterfall of several feet in height. 
The rocky bottom of the river was as slippery as though 
coated with oil. As the wagon moved off my feet slipped 
and I fell, going entirely under the water. It was difficult 
to. regain footing once it was lost, for the force of the cur- 
rent was very strong. Every time I arose to the surface 
I would slip again and fall. My head was out of the water 
just often enough to keep from drowning. All the while 


I was going downstream with the rapidity of the swift cur- 
rent. I struggled fiercely to maintain my footing, but it 
was impossible. I went over the falls in the terribly roar- 
ing water and disappeared from sight. 

One of the ladies of the party fainted and the rest of 
them screamed. But the fright did not last long, because 
I was soon seen to climb up the bank below with only a 
few mementos of the occasion in the form of a few scratches 
and bruises. 

McCree Cave opens into a perpendicular rock wall about 
two hundred feet high. This wall runs parallel to the river 
a great way and is broken here and there by gulches which 
take the rain water from the hills to the river. Between 
this wall and the water there is a flat table of land averag- 
ing fifty feet in width, which is also broken by gulches. 
Over one of these latter gulches it was impossible to take 
the wagons, so the horses were detached and ridden the 
remainder of the way to the cave. 

There were no saddles, so the gentlemen mounted the 
horses bareback and each took a lady on behind him. The 
ladies rode sideways and each had to hold on to her man 
to keep from falling off. The more frisky the horse, the 
more tightly the girl had to hold, so the gentle old plug 
I was riding took on new life. He was tickled in the ribs 
just enough to insure a firm grasp around the waist by 
a pair of beautiful white arms. An occasional sharp kick 
in the side would make the old horse jump and insure a 
more warm embrace which was not altogether distasteful 
to me. 

The first two hundred yards led straight into the cave, 
which was wide enough to admit a large wagon. Much 
farther in a pool of water about thirty feet wide was en- 
countered, and it stretched from side to side of the cave. 
I led the the way into the water, feeling in front of me all 
the while with a pole. When safe passage was demon- 
strated the women were taken across in human chairs, 
made by a man holding his own left wrist with his right 
hand and the right wrist of some other man with the left 
hand. The men and women were all dressed as befited 
the occasion, except a fastidious youth from Houston. He 
had been recently admitted to the bar, and was on his dig- 
nity. He wore a beautiful white flannel suit, patent leather 
shoes, a white collar and an immaculate white tie. He 
asked me to take him across the water as I had taken the 


ladies. There was a ready assent, and a wink to one of 
the boys brought an assistant for making the human chair. 

The lawyer was assisted to the seat and he held a hand 
on the head of each of us. He was in high glee and joked 
the other fellows about getting wet. When the middle of 
the pool was reached I pretended to stumbel and I fell; at 
the same time I turned the lawyer heels over head in the 
water and he was completely submerged. When he arose 
to his feet he was coughing and sneezing and cursing up 
his sleeve. He was a much disgusted man and no doubt 
wondered why he had been such a fool as to request the 

A little farther on the cave became more interesting. 
It opened high and wide and the roof could only be seen 
by concentrating the torches and candles. There were 
myriads of stalactites and stalagmites both great and 
small, and each glistened with a silvery sheen. 

While we were examining these wondrous works of 
nature there was a snarling growl heard in the darkness 
beyond us. Everyone was startled and the women seized 
each other in fright. Several of the men drew their pis- 
tols, and one of them fired in the direction of the noise. 
Immediately a large black bear rushed upon us. He 
knocked one of the ladies down and jumped over the law- 
yer, who was already down trying to hide behind the ladies, 
and disappeared in the direction of the mouth of the cave. 

Frightened almost into imbecility, all of the women fol- 
lowed the bear. When the pool was reached there was no 
hesitation. They plunged into it as though it did not exist, 
and they came out on the other side wet to the waist. No 
form of appeal from the men could slacken their pace, and 
they tarried not until well beyond the mouth of the cave. 


A bridal party doing a tour of the world was stopping 
at the Volcano House at the crate rof Kilauea in Hawaii. 
They had been there several days, but had not been induced 
to go down into the crater, as all other visitors were doing. 
The groom was a natural-born coward, but the bride was 
as brave as a lioness. She was very anxious to go into the 
crater with the rest of the visitors, but her husband would 
not go nor would he permit her to go without him. She 


was subject to the will of her peculiar "lord and master." 

On the bride's account, as well as for the fun I expected 
to have out of him, I determined to get him into the crater 
if it was possible to do so. I made friends with the fellow, 
whom we will call "Lincoln" because he was from Lincoln, 

After some days of persuasion the man was induced to 
make the trip, provided I would accompany him. We went 
on horseback and I took a position between Lincoln and 
his wife in a crowd which rode single file. It was not long 
after the floor of the large crater was reached that Lin- 
coln began to express dismay and kick. 

Sulphur fume was coming up from hot cracks all over 
the cool lava floor of the crater, and the nearer we were 
to the small crater the hotter they were. The small crater 
is a crater within a crater. It is but a deep half-mile diam- 
eter hole which just drops down through the floor of the 
large crater. Lincoln said he believed nine-tenths of those 
who went into the crater lost their lives and that the news- 
papers suppressed the fact in the interest of the, hotel. 

"Nonsense," said I. "This is as safe a place as there is 
upon the island. No life has ever been lost here except 
that of a man who died of fright. Just keep up a stout 
heart, a stiff upper lip, follow your guide and fear not." 

Soon we reached a rock corral built on the floor of the 
large crater to protect the animals from cold wind which 
is/ often keenly felt in the crater. The animals cannot be 
taken any farther than the corral because the cracks be- 
come too hot and wide. When the crowd dismounted Lin- 
coln seized the right arm of his wife and followed me, 
I led him out of the regular trail where he would have to 
cross an especially wide and hot crack. To lead him to the 
slaughter gradually he was taken across several smaller 
cracks first. Nevertheless when he began to feel the heat 
and smell the sulphur he balked and began to beg. 

"I want to go home. Please take me out. This is a 
dangerous place. You have a right to commit suicide if 
you like, but you have no right to lead others in here to 
lose their lives. I want to go home." 

"Then follow me," said I, "and I will lead you out. Just 
jump across this crack as you see I have done and we will 
return you to the corral." 

That particular crack was the desired spot to which I 
wished to lead him. It was the hottest in the crater, but 


Lincoln did not know it. Having seen me pass over the 
crack and remain alive, he gripped his wife's arm with 
renewed fervor and they leaped the crack together. When 
they landed on the other side they were completely envel- 
oped in pungent sulphur fumes taken to that side by the 
wind. There was absolutely no danger, but the irritating 
smell was sufficient to impress Lincoln as never before. 
He yelled like a wild goat and begged the Hawaiian guide 
to take him home, and with wet eyes he looked appeal- 
ingly at me as he spoke. 

"I cannot go another foot. How do you know but that 
in five minutes we will all be in hell ? I will not go another 

The poor devil stood all aquiver and tears rolled down 
his cheeks. I led him back to the corral, where he and 
his wife, the latter thoroughly disgusted, mounted horses 
and returned to the hotel. 

Lincoln, the source of my fun, being gone, I lost interest 
in the little crater, with which I was very familiar, having 
visited it many times at all hours of the day and night. 
I. left the crowd on the brink of the crater, where men, 
women and children were looking down into the wonderful 
hole, watching the constantly changing scenery and listen- 
ing to the frightful noises emanating from the bowels of the 
earth. I strolled over to the big, hot crack which had fright- 
ened Lincoln nearly into imbecility and I wrapped myself 
snugly up in my pommel slicker, laid down on the lava to 
the leeward of the crack where I would be kept warm by the 
steam which emanated from its depths and went to sleep, 
but was soon aroused by a pungent burning in my back. 
Placing my hand underneath my body I put my fingers in 
a small crack, the hot steam from which was burning 
through my clothing to my skin. I rolled over from the 
crack and went to sleep again. This time I slept a long 
while and when I arose again I went back to the little 
crater in search of my companions, but found they had 
all gone away. Then I went to the corral where the horses 
had been left and they, too, were gone. Fortunately the 
stars were shining with a brightness which gave light by 
which I found my way back to the edge of the crater floor. 
I climbed up the nine hundred feet to the surface of the 
earth and reached the hotel just at the dawn of day. I 
was left in the crater because it was thought I had returned 
with Lincoln and his wife, and no one dreamed one would 


risk or seek solitude in such a dismal place. 

Lincoln took the first boat which left the islands, swear- 
ing he would cut Italy out of his itinerary because of its 

Twenty -Ninth 


The Hawaiian is an amible, generous, hospitable fellow. 
He will give away anything, everything — even his children 
he will give to his friends. I was physician to a family of 
five children and not one was a legitimate heir. They had 
been given to the couple who was caring for them, and 
their own had been given to others to rear. To express 
admiration for a thing is to own it. It will be immediately 
proffered and if refused the would-be donor will be injured 
in feeling. 

A small puppy belonging to me fell into an earthquake 
crack which was perhaps two feet wide in the widest 
places, and apparently bottomless. There were ledges on 
either side of the crack which obscured vision and the 
puppy was soon out of sight, but it could be heard con- 
tinuously whining, seemingly at a great distance below, so 
it was certain it had londged on a ledge. A Hawaiian 
procured a rope about sixtey feet in length, tied it securely 
around the waist of a very small brother and lowered him 
down in the crack out of sight. When the little boy gave 
a signal he was drawn out, and he had the puppy in his 
arms. I handed the man several silver dollars, which he 
refused to take, and seemed injured at the proposition to 
pay him. 

In the long, long ago there were no thefts in Hawaii. 
Even as late as the year nineteen hundred vendors exposed 
along the roadside such products as they wished to sell 
and the purchaser sold to himself. He made his own 
change and deposited the money in the place of the article 
he bought. 

Toward night the owner, not having appeared during 
the entire day, would take back to his house the unsold 
commodities and the proceeds of the day. They were cared 
for at night solely to avert depredations by wild cattle, 
dogs or hogs, the only wild beasts to be found upon the 
islands. No doors were ever locked. A family might leave 
a house for weeks at a time and find everything in place 


when it returned. The house might be occupied by passers, 
but everything would be left in perfect order. 

Step by step since the advent of the missionary condi- 
tions have changed. There were no locks nor chains nor 
prisons. The dispensor of the Christian religian created 
necessity for all these things. At least pilfering, pistols 
and prisons have followed in his wake. A missionary to 
Guam, passing Hawaii, offered me the assurance of riches 
in land deals if I would join him in Guam, but his proposi- 
tions were spurned. 

Very few Hawaiians owned land when the islands were 
ceded to the United States. Drink is their stronghold; it 
is said they were given drink for the purpose of getting 
them drunk in order to lend them money on their lands 
which it was well known they could never return. The 
mortgage given, while intoxicated, was foreclosed and the 
property changed hands at the price of a few cents per 
acre, when it was really valued at from one to two hundred 

Just after annexation, when the inhabitants were be- 
ing converted to Republicanism, one Hawaiian orator said: 

"The missionary is he who came to your country and 
told you to get down on your knees, shut your eyes, and 
pray to his God; and while you were down with your eyes 
shut he was stealing your land. Who is the Republican 
party? Who owns these islands now? The missionaries 
and their descendants. Will you vote for them? Now, 
who is the Democratic party ? Mr. Clevelaand is the man 
who put up your flag and gave you back your country after 
it had been stolen from you by these missionary Repub- 
licans. Mr. Cleveland is the Democratic party. He is the 
man to vote for." 

But the Hawaiian will not be here long to vote or hold 
land. Tuberculosis, the specific diseases brought to the 
islands by Captain Cook's sailors, for which Captain Cook 
was afterward killed, together with miscegenation and 
drink, will soon eliminate the last drop of his blood. He 
is fast passing away. 

While the Hawaiian is honest, he is a lazy laggard. And 
why should he be otherwise? He does not have to work 
to live. He needs but little clothing, and he eats, poi, raw 
fish and fruits. He would exchange his last shirt for a 
drink, but liquor does not make of him a fighting beast. 
When he gets drunk he sings, dances and sleeps. 


The percentage of illiteracy in Hawaii is very small. 
Even the oldest inhabitant can read in his own language. 
But the Hawaiian has no ambition. Many have been sent 
to the United States and educated at Harvard and other 
such institutions,, and when they returned to their old 
haunts they have no higher ambition than to lasso bulls. 

As a plantation physician I was a Government physi- 
cian. It was my duty to treat the poor, make examination 
of schools and send all leper suspects to Honolulu under 
arrest. If they were there again adjudged leprous they were 
sent to the Island of Molokai. It was a painful thing to 
separate man and wife, or to tear a child from its parents 
and home and banish it for life, but it had to be done in 
the interests of humanity. Usually there was no resist- 
ance, but occasionally a man adjudged a leper would fly to 
the hills and have to be hunted down like an escaped crim- 
inal. He would subsist upon wild fruits and roots and such 
food as might be given him clandestinely. Sometimes they 
would kill or be killed rather than be caught. A life in the 
woods was preferable simply because of ignorance of the 
desirable conditions at Molokai. 

My first visit to Molokai, the leper island, was made 
with the Board of Health which had entire control of the 
island. The ship left Honolulu at an hour which insured 
its arrival at Molokai at daylight in the morning. There 
is no wharf at the landing, nor is there a derrick, such as 
is found at some of the island landings where persons and 
freight are hoisted in a box over a very high bluff and 
swung around to where they are put on the ground. The 
ship's landing is a rough and rugged one. The passengers 
are taken ashore in the ship's lifeboats, which have to be 
be manipulated with the greatest of care as they pass be- 
tween large projecting rocks which menace the lives of 
their occupants. 

The Hawaiian is the most skillful oarsman and the best 
swimmer in the world. Even boys swim out to ship as 
they enter the harbor and dive for money thrown from 
the decks. If the money strikes the water within twenty 
feet of them they will go down like a fish and never miss it. 

The first thing encountered at Molokai are two high 
board fences about ten feet apart which extend across the 
little peninsula upon which the visitors land. The visitors 
reach one fence and the inhabitants reach the other and 
they converse across the space between the fences. Gates 


in the fences admit the entrance of the members of the 
Board of Health and their special guests to the village of 
Kalapapa. The village of Kalawo is situated three miles 
away and just across the base of the cape upon which the 
lepers are confined. From the security offered by the 
natural formation of the cape it seems a place provided by 
nature for the very purpose for which it is used. It is 
bounded on the west, where it is attached to the main body 
of the island, by a bluff two thousand feet high and is 
passable only by birds. Being a triangular cape, on the 
other two sides it is bounded by water. A police force pre- 
vents the landing of boats, or the sailing of boats, so it 
can be readily seen how next to impossible it is for one to 
escape. One placed there as a leper is there for life, 
because there is no certain cure. More recently it seems 
there is hope of a permanent cure, but years will be re- 
quired to prove it, because leprosy is a disease that appar- 
ently cures itself sometimes and returns again after lying 
dormant for a time. 

Lepers are on Molokai in every phase of the disease. In 
some it is scarcely noticeable, while others are so hideously 
deformed they are scarcely recognizable as human beings. 
Of the twelve hundred there on that day there was not one 
who expressed discontent ; but few were in pain, and no one 
anticipated an early death. The disease does not often 
kill. It is a pity it does not, because they usually just rot 
along and die of something else. 

There are but two small villages on the leper cape. The 
largest is called Kalapapa and the other Kalawao. Kala- 
papa is built upon more stony ground than Kalawao, hence 
has not the pretty shrubbery that the latter has, but it 
has its attractions and is an institution of which to be 
proud. The use of liquor is forbidden, but the strong pro- 
pensity of the Hawaiians to drink is equal in the sick and 
the well, so the leper will withhold rice, potatoes, etc., from 
his food allowance and distill clandestinely, by crude 
methods of his own, an alcoholic drink which promptly 

There is a brass band at each of the leper villages which 
furnishes real good music, under the circumstances. Of 
course, not one of the musicians is physically perfect. The 
right hand of one of the bass drummers had sloughed away 
and the drumstick was lashed to the remaining part of the 
arm. Some hold brass horns with one hand maimed and 


work the keys with the other no less diseased. The Ha- 
waiian is a natural musician and his music is usually very 
pretty, but the words of his songs are often foul. 

Many of the relatives of the lepers are allowed to visit 
them on each of the monthly visits of the Board of Health. 
When the ship is ready to sail it is a difficult matter to 
force them away from the separation fences. The scene 
is heart-rending. Both the sick and the well weep, moan 
and gnash teeth in evidence of their grief. The expression 
of feeling could not be more vehement were they actually 
facing the end of the world. The wail of the Hawaiian is 
a thing peculiar to them. Like the scream of an epileptic, 
once heard it will never be forgotten. Yet, strange to say, 
as soon as the ship is under way the moaners grow hila- 
rious. They sing and dance and seem as happy as mortals 
can be. Memory seems short. Like the cow that bellows 
at the sight of fresh blood and forgets it as soon as the 
scene is changed, they soon forget their grief. 

The only precaution against contagion taken by the 
visiting doctors is to wear gloves which are thrown into 
the sea the moment they return to the ship. This is because 
of the persistent handshaking of the Hawaiian, who takes 
offense if he is not met half way in his expressions of 



The United States Geodetic Survey boat the "Path- 
finder" was lying in the harbor of Hilo, Hawaii. The offi- 
cers and men, as far as could be spared from the boat at 
one time, were visiting the Volcano House at the crater of 
Kilauea. A number of the citizens of Hilo were there also, 
and I was among the number. 

Mr. Perry, the secretary of the Pathfinder, was one of 
the guests. He was boasting of being a hero of several 
wars and feared nothing, and was, as usual, deeply and 
chronically "in his cups." He was mixing drinks, regard- 
less of color or quality. 

I made his acquaintance and introduced him to some of 
my friends as a minister, having first asked those friends 
to insist upon his holding services in the parlor of the 
hotel on the following morning, which would be Sunday. 
Perry declined the invitation, but was so drunk he neg- 


lected to deny that he was a minister, so it was whispered 
about that he was really one of the cloth but had fallen 
from grace. 

I plead with the man to comply with the often repeated 
request and after a time an idea seemed to penetrate his 
whisky-soaked brain. He said he would preach if he could 
secure some one to open and close the services. I readily 
agreed to do that, and it was arranged we would meet at 
9 o'clock of the following morning, Sunday, and walk down 
in the timber to formulate a definite plan of action. 

Perry claimed thorough competence to deliver a ser- 
mon; one that would entertain the people in a truly spir- 
itual way; one that would be long remembered by all who 
were fortunate enough to hear it. All of this, of course, 
I did not doubt, for Perry was then full of spirits and doubt- 
less would be when the time came to preach, a thing I had 
no intention of allowing him to do. 

When the morning came Perry and I met as agreed 
and we walked down into the woods to arrange our plans. 
We followed a trail which I knew led to an open space which 
was kept free from vegetation by a large sulphur blowhole 
in the center of it. 

Along this trail I excited the would-be preacher by 
reciting blood-curdling tales of dastardly acts committed 
by Porto Ricans and other renegades who were at large in 
the country- I told of the danger of getting far from the 
hotel, as many had been robbed quite near the house. In 
fact, they were so bold persons had been killed and robbed 
in the public streets in the daytime. 

When we entered the open space mentioned above, 
Perry's fear was fully aroused. I stopped suddenly and 
spoke, which was a signal to my friends in the brush to 
fire: "Listen, there's a movement in the brush," said I. 

Imemdiately a bombardment began. Bullets sang over 
our heads like a swarm of bees. At the first shot I fell, 
and Perry disappeared. 

"Come back ! Corner back ! I am killed !" I cried. 

But Perry did not come back. Nor did he hesitate for 
a moment. He disappeared as quickly as the shadow of 
a flying bird could cross a telephone wire. He ran until 
he fell full length upon the floor in the hotel office, and 
he panted like a broken-winded horse. His eyes spread to 
full capacity, and in mortal terror he related what had 


"I distinctly saw four Porto Ricans. Each of them shot 
at me six times. Dr. Hunter is dead. They killed him 
instantly. Bullets came so near me they almost cut my 
ears off." 

At that moment I (the dead doctor) and the four Porto 
Ricans appeared upon the scene. We walked in as demure 
as though nothing had happened, and I took a stand in the 
midst of the crowd just opposite to Perry. 

Each individual was listening to Perry's tale of woe 
with bated breath and bounding heart. When Perry's eyes 
caught mine he was struck dumb. I did not speak. It was 
not necessary. I simply looked at Perry and laughed, and 
the crowd laughed with me. 

Instead of preaching, Perry and the entire crew of the 
Pathfinder took the 11 o'clock stage for Hilo mid the hearty 
jeers of the hotel guests. 

When they reached the ship they raised anchor and 
sailed away. 



Off an island in the Pacific Ocean, I and five other 
persons, one a negro, were hunting deer by sitting in trees 
at night. Each man was numbered and we were stationed 
in a row. Number one took the first tree, number two the 
second and so on to the end. It was well understood that 
the last man, number six, would whoop when it was time 
to return to camp. Number five would then whoop, then 
number four, then number three, then number two and 
number one. After the whooping no gun was to be fired 
under any circumstances and the men would all come down 
from the trees and meet at tree number one. 

I was given tree number one and the negro was given 
tree number two. 

At about 9 o'clock p. m. the moon went down, but the 
stars shone with sufficient brightness for the outline of 
large objects to be seen if very near. 

I heard something walking beneath my tree and I aimed 
my gun in the direction of the noise, intending to shoot 
as soon as the object came into view. To my great aston- 
ishment I saw the object climbing up my tree. Very natu- 
rally I thought it was the negro, who had disobeyed orders 
through fright and was coming to me for company. So 


I began to abuse him. 

"Where are you going, nigger? What do you mean by 
leaving your tree?" 

There was no response, and I continued: 

"Say, you black devil, what are you coming up this tree 

Still there was no response. By this time he had 
climbed the body of the tree and was on the limb upon 
which I was sitting. He was between me and the trunk 
of the tree. He moved a little closer and I remonstrated 

"Get back there, nigger. Don't come out on this limb." 
I turned my gun toward the nigger and threatened to punch 
him off the limb. The gun was slapped out of my hands 
and it fell to the ground. It was not until that moment 
that I learned I was talking to a big black bear. The in- 
stant I recognized my visitor I sprang toward the end of 
the limb and by means of the small branches I reached the 
ground. I seized my gun and the bear came down faster 
than he had gone up. It was his last climb. 



A small party consisting of ladies and gentlemen of the 
Rio Grande Valley was organized for an outing. The party 
selected one of the various lakes in the county as an objec- 
tive point, having an eye to venison as well as to quail and 
ducks upon which to feast. 

Early in the afternoon the party reached the lake and 
the men were divided into a ducker, a quailer, a fisher, a 
deer hunter and camp keepers. Each man selected his best 
girl for a companion and they started on their death-dealing 
mission. Before leaving the camp they formed a jackpot 
which would go to the first man returning to camp having 
reached the limit of the game law. 

In just two hours the quail hunter returned with thirty 
quail and claimed the jackpot. In ample time the fisher 
brought a string of fish which would have made the mouth 
of a wooden man run water like a mountain spring in the 
wet season of the year. 

At sundown two blasts of a horn, which is the hunter's 
call, were heard. Help was needed, for a six-prong buck, 
so fat it resembled a stall-fed steer, had been killed. 


When it was light enough to see the trails I, the duck 
hunter, came to camp. I wore a disappointed, woebegone 
countenance. ■ I had killed but two small ducks and my 
lady had eight to her credit. The only explanation of the 
situation was that when the ducks saw the angelic crea- 
ture who was waiting for them, they became anamoured 
and, like men, fell at her feet. 

The camp keepers had cleared a large square of ground 
near the water, separated from the water by a thicket of 
tall, thorny blackberry bushes. 

After a late supper of assorted meats and all the good 
things that go on such an occasion, everybody retired. Be- 
fore I retired I had requested my lady friend to inform the 
other ladies that I would play a joke in the night, and they 
must not be frightened at anything they heard. I went to 
bed, but I did not sleep. I remained awake until everyone 
else was asleep. Then I crept silently from the tent and 
straddled the tongue of a wagon, which I had taken to the 
side of the men's tent in the afternoon and tethered four 
horses to the wheels. I shook the tongue vigorously, which 
rattled the chains loudly, and I tramped the ground and 
yell at the top of my voice, "Whoa! Whoa! Whoa!" and 
I fell over against the tent, which shook it from center to 
circumference. In less than a half minute each man was 
out of the tent and was running as though wild Indians 
were after him. One man took up in the briar patch, which 
saved him from a bath with his clothes on, and another 
went squarely up against the trunk of a tree and laid upon 
the ground in an unconscious state for quite awhile before 
he could speak. 

Hearty laughter by the ladies brought the brave boys 
back from their hiding places in the swamp. There was 
no more sleeping that night and the crowd swore vengeance 
against me. 


Accepting a position as mine physician in Mexico, I left 
Hawaii, going by way of Victoria, British Columbia. 

The first three days at sea were pleasant enough, but 
on the fifth day the wind began to blow. It increased in 
velocity until by the next morning the ship was running in 
a full gale. Every passenger remained in bed. There were 


no such things as walking around or eating. The storm 
increased in violence and the waves rolled higher and higher 
as the hours passed by. About half of the time the pro- 
peller was out of the water, and it fanned the air as the 
ship quivered upon the crest of waves, which seemed high 
enough to reach the very dome of heaven. The ship's sails 
were all furled. Her hatches, windows and doors were all 
closed. The engine was slowed down to a point which barely 
enabled the pilot to steer her. Nothing could be kept in 
place, unless fastened. Crockery flitted about like fright- 
ened birds in a cage. Valises, shoes, parcels of every kind 
and clothes slipped and slid about in the staterooms from 
side to side as the ship climbed upon the mighty billows or 
glided down into the depths of turbulent watery vales. 

The night was as dark as death. There was no sign of 
light save when a vivid electric flash brought to view a sea 
of racing liquid mountains. Each wave had a thousand 
peaks ; each peak was capped with a frothy hood, and all 
seemed frenzied. They seemed madly running in every 
direction, and they rudely climbed upon each other and 
burst with a deafening roar. The ship climbed tremblingly 
up the sides of lofty waves and slid with lightning speed 
to the bottom of the troughs below. She cut her way 
through the boiling sea and was at times lost to view. 
Sometimes her loftiest masthead was below the foaming 
peaks. The rigging sang uncertain songs and the masts 
careened and creaked, while the ship's deck was washed by 
maddened waves. Mighty billows beat against her sides 
with loud report and drove terror to the hearts of those 
within. Every timber of the ship cracked and creaked and 
told of the awful war of wind and wave that waged with- 
out. Strong men were torn from their hold and hurled 
against the bulwark like flies before an electric fan. Bil- 
lows rolled over the ship from stem to stern. They washed 
over the pilot house and bridge, submerged the officers on 
watch and rolled by the cabin doors with an appalling crash. 
Water found its way into the saloon and staterooms, and 
the sinking of the ship seemed but a moment postponed. 
But it was not to be so. 

At the end of the third day the storm abated, but long 
after that hour the waves rolled to a sickening height and 
forced many to remain in bed. But the gale was over, and 
every heart was gladdened when the ship ran into the 


placid water of Juan de Fuca Sound, where the city of Vic- 
toria was in sight. 

From Victoria I took a boat to Seattle and a train to 
Texas. Upon reaching El Paso I met Dr. Johnston and a 
few moments conversation revealed the fact that we had 
graduated at the same medical school. The result was 
the acceptance of an invitation to accompany Dr. Johnston 
to his mine on the Yaqui River in Sonora, Mexico. 

On the following day we left for Nogales. There we 
purchased knives, firearms and ammunition suited to a 
journey through one of the most dangerous sections of 
country in the world at that time. It was infested with 
murderous Yaqui Indians who were killing Mexicans and 
foreigners alike. 

At Hermosillo it was necessary to abandon the trains 
and take to the trails. We were warned against the under- 
taking and urged not to go except under military escort 
which would be furnished by the Government free of 
charge, but we declined the company of tin soldiers and 
went to the mine alone. We went from village to village 
in the day, going across country in which murder was of 
almost daily occurrence. 

The farms had all been deserted by their Mexican owners 
who had not been murdered by the Yaquis. The Mexicans 
held the towns and the Indians the country, but the Indians 
had the advantage, in a way. Some of them were yet 
friendly and lived in the towns. Their brothers of the 
warpath would visit them undetected and keep posted on 
all movements. They would learn of expeditions and plan 
to rob them. They always knew just when and where to 
strike and were always successful. 

The Yaquis, it was said, were living peacefully in the 
Valley of the river of the same name. The soil is as fertile 
as that of the Nile, and they were industrious farmers, 
far more so than the Mexicans, and they really produced 
the breadstuff of the country. Those fertile lands had 
attractions for the white man, and it is said the Mexican 
Government, seeing millions in them, forcibly exchanged 
inferior lands for the valley land and sold the rich valley 
land to the white man. The red man thought himself out- 
raged. He put on war paint, took up his rifle and went to 
the woods. He preferred the rifle to the pick or the plow 
on any other than the fertile lands of his father. 

On the second day of our memorable venture we passed 


a farm where a whole family, consisting of nine, had just 
been murdered. The bodies were still warm, but the mur- 
derers had gone. The only trace of them was their sandal 
tracks, which showed the direction they had gone. It was 
believed they had taken with them a Mexican girl who had 
worked for the dead family, as her body was not with the 

Some few weeks previous to the multi-murder Sr. San- 
ches, the head of the dead family, had poisoned with strych- 
nine a lot of mescal, a Mexican drink, and placed it care- 
fully away in a locked trunk. At the same time he had in 
his dining room a quantity of the same stimulant which 
was in a pure state. A few days later the Sanches family 
was visiting in a neighboring town and the Yaquis robbed 
his home. They were suspicious and would not drink of 
the mescal in the dining room, but partook freely of that 
found in the locked trunk. Sixteen of them died in the 

Santiago Sanches well knew this act meant death to 
him if he remained in the country, and he was leaving when 
he was killed along with his entire family. 

A few hours after the murder Johnston and I reached 
the town of "Take-Ripa," and the presidente of the munici- 
pality ordered in immediate pursuit a few rurales who were 
stationed there, himself leading the expedition, accompa- 
nied by Johnston and me. 

Before night we were in gunshot of the foe. The In- 
dians were overtaken while ascending the side of a deep 
ravine, which gave the pursuing party a great advantage. 
It goes without saying the Indians knew they were being 
pursued and it was evident they had miscalculated the 
speed of the rurales. They had no doubt expected to cross 
the ravine and attack the rurales while down in it. But 
the conditions were somewhat reversed. They were ascend- 
ing the steep side when seen. Every rurale's gun sang out 
a note of death as it sent a bullet in search of a YaquiV 
heart. The Yaquis returned the fire and were instantly 
lost to view. They were gone, effectually gone, but no one 
knew where. Their disappearance was magical. Two 
Yaquis were killed, and one whose leg was broken by a 
bullet was caught and hung. All manner of brutal punish- 
ment was inflicted upon him to force a divulgence of infor- 
mation concerning the rest of his band, but he died true to 
his comrades, as mute as a mole. 


While torturing the captured Yaqui a voice was heard 
in the rocks. It proved to be the girl who lived with the 
Sanches family. She had taken advantage of the situation 
and was falling into the hands of her kind. She gave evi- 
dence of much brutal treatment, and Johnston and I re- 
lieved her suffering of which she bitterly complained. 

The true hand of President Diaz was never shown in 
the Yaqui war. His method was extermination of all that 
did not do his will. As proof of this, see the tragic dis- 
appearance of the inhabitants of the town of Temosechic. 
It is said a resident of the town claimed to be Christ and 
his following was so augmented he interfered with the do- 
ings of the Catholic priests. A squad of soldiers was sent 
to suppress the Christ, but they did not do it. They were 
soundly drubbed and their arms taken away. So enraged 
was Diaz that he sent a whole regiment to the town with 
instructions to kill every man, woman and child in the 
place who could speak. The orders were executed and more 
than an hundred babes were cared for by the mothers of 
other children. 

Instead of that kind of treatment, all captured Yaquis 
were sent to Yucatan and disposed of. Sold into slavery, 
did you ask? Well, it was much the same. 

During the stay in the Yaqui country I had occasion 
to return to Hermosillo and I went along with a ten-mule 
stage, which was occupied by four Americaans who had 
taken advantage of the protecting arm of the Government, 
being escorted by sixteen soldiers. I should say convicts, 
because the regular army was composed of long-term con- 
victs. They had no incentive to fight, and never did when 
it could be avoided. And why should they risk their lives 
for a pot of beans and a few tortillas ? That is all they got. 
The sixteen were of the usual type. They wore the regula- 
tion dirty linen suit and sandals, and resembled things that 
fall from comic almanacs or such as the cats bring in. They 
were mounted upon hungry horses of the rosenante type 
and eight of them rode in front and eight behind the stage. 
They traveled at a tantalizingly slow gait and no power 
could induce them to quicken their pace, except a Yaqui 

The first night had to be spent in an abandoned ranch 
hut on account of rain. Had the Yaquis attacked us the 
Americans would have had to protect the soldiers, for they 
took possession of the little hut and carpeted the hut with 


their bodies, leaving the Americans to occupy the porch, 
which, fortunately, was under roof. The floor of the room 
was lower than that of the porch and by midnight the rain 
water ran in and covered the floor, wetting every soldier 
and forcing him out upon the porch, where they spent the 
rest of the night trying to dry themselves while the Ameri- 
cans remained upon dry pallets and laughed. 

On the next day an American named Brittan joined the 
party at a small town and rode with me, I was on horse- 
back and constantly far in advance of the stage, Brittan 
became uneasy and complained: 

"Let's wait for the stage," said he. "These woods are 
full of Indians and we are liable to be shot at any time. 
This is a dangerous place. You know how we have been 
warned against it. This is a famous Indian trail and we 
are both liable to be killed without warning. Let's go back 
to the stage." 

"You are right, my friend, and such is the case in many 
parts of this country, but I will go along just the same. 
I usually go alone and I never start anywhere without 
thinking it may be my last time." 

"It is tempting Providence to proceed in this heedless 
way after the warnings we have had," said Brittan. "Let's 
go back to the stage." 

"You see, Mr. Brittan, I am out for sport, and if I ride 
near that old squeaky stage I will never get a shot at a 
wolf or a deer. If you wish to do so you may return to the 
stage and I will take no offense, or you may ride some dis- 
tance behind me and if I am shot, you will perhaps be 
able to make your escape. I am going to remain in front 
no matter what happens." 

Brittan thought me a little foolhardy, so he went back 
to the stage, took a position between it and the rear guard 
and there he remained. 

Shortly after Brittan left me it began to rain, and every 
track in the road was obliterated. In a few moments it 
ceased raining and I noticed fresh footprints in the road. 
They were sandal tracks, hence were those of Yaquis, as 
no one wore sandals in that section of country except 
Yaquis. I reached a fork in the road, being on one prong 
of it. I noticed that the Yaqui tracks turned down the 
other prong of the fork, and were perfectly fresh. I be- 
lieved the Indians had heard or had seen me coming and 
had gone into the brush to hide. I stopped my horse in 


the middle of the road and waited for the stage. I did not 
draw my rifle from the scabbard, fearing the Indians would 
construe it as a bellicose act and fire upon me. Besides, 
from the freshness of the tracks I knew intuitively, as I 
often did, that the Indians were quite near me. 

When the stage arrived two of the soldiers dismounted 
and followed the tracks along with me. It was seen that 
the Indians had entered the brush between the two roads. 
At that moment the cry of wolves was heard in the brush. 
They could not have been a hundred feet away, but the 
underbrush was so dense they could not be seen. The cry 
was so evidently not that of wolves that I exclaimed: 

"Those are not wolves. What are they?" 

"They are Yaquis ! They are Yaquis ! Let us go ! Let 
us go!" said Mr. Soldier, and suiting the action to the admo- 
nition, he mounted as quickly as possible and was soon out 
of sight, he and his whole gang. 

It was evident the Yaquis knew how to get rid of the 
soldiers. Their imperfect imitation of wolves was imper- 
fect for the express purspose of being understood. 

What a beautiful target I was, if the Yaquis had wished 
to use me as such. I had sat upon my horse in the middle 
of the road for ten minutes without even a bush to screen 
me. It seemed they were killing everybody else they could. 
Why did they not kill me ? Just because there is an allotted 
time for each man to die, and mine had not come. 

While residing in the town of Ameca, in Mexico, it 
became necessary for me to purchase a horse, and I fre- 
quently went in quest of one. 

On one occasion I was led by a Mexican through his 
house, a back yard and two dirty, darkly enclosed corrals. 
Then I was taken through another corral where animals 
were fed, sometimes. A small horse was led from a dark 
stall into the corridor where the feed trough was. It was 
a pathetic bag of bones, just such as are killed in bullrings 
because of their utter worthlessness. It resembled a horse- 
hide hung on a picket fence. It held up its skinny head, 
looked anxiously at me and whinnied. The tone was expres- 
sive of extreme hunger and I was a little afraid, but no 
man need fear being eaten for something green when there 
is a peon around. 

84 I: v 

Very naturally the creature was rejected at the first 
glance, but to avoid possible offense I proceeded to examine 
the beast. It was very small and to examine its upper teeth 
I had to stoop very low. Just as I bent myself down I expe- 
rienced a terrible blow upon the seat of my pants. It came 
with sufficient force to drive me hard up against the feed 
trough, and a million stars danced before my eyes. 

I had a contempt for one who would attempt to brain 
me through my pants, but the situation was urgent. I had 
to act, and act quickly. I had either to try to run, call for 
help or try to bluff. The moment was harrowing. I be- 
lieved I had been led into that dark corner to be robbed 
or killed. 

Being unarmed and weak from a recent illness, I was 
helpless. The only strong thing about me was my voice, 
so I hurled a few Sunday anathemas in the air and turned 
upon my adversary. I fully expected to be shot or stabbed 
as I turned, so I whirled around with all the force and vigor 
I could summon and I met with a great surprise. I con- 
fronted an immense white ram poised upon his hind legs 
for another blow. 

St. Paul said; "I have learned in whatsoever lot I find 
myself therewith to be content," but he did not mean a 
horse lot, nor a sheep lot. I was always Paul-like, so I did 
not even resent the laughter of the villain who was enjoy- 
ing the discomfort he could so easily have prevented. 

Thirty -Fifth 


The town of Ameca, Mexico, in which I resided a long 
time, is not unlike other Mexican towns. The Catholic 
Church reminds one of an elephant in a herd of goats. It 
looms up like a mountain among molehills. It can be seen 
long before any other house comes into view, and it keeps 
the people mindful of duty by the most unearthly — in other 
words, hellish — clanging of bells of many tones at all hours 
of the day and of the night. 

Many a stranger on his first visit to Mexico is startled 
by the bells in the day and springs from bed at night, think- 
ing the whole town is on fire. The use of explosive rockets 
is said to be reserved to the church, and the almost daily 
pyrotechnic display enforces remembrance upon the simple- 
minded who are in duty bound to heed their call. 


It is this constant ringing of bells and bursting of 
rockets that remind the people of crawling into the 
churches upon their knees, and of daubing holy water in 
their faces in the form of a cross. 

Mexican Catholics do not respect the Sabbath. It is the 
great "Fiesta" day, the day of great public gatherings and 
of elections. It is the day upon which the rurals comes to 
town. They find the stores and the barrooms all wide open 
and the gambling hells in full blast. It is the day of all 
others for bull fighting, chicken fighting and of general 
amusement and iniquity. The grinding of these mills of 
the devil is sanctioned by the church and those highest in 
authority, all of whom are interested in the proceeds. 

The "Fiesta" days are those upon which most of the 
religious horse-play exhibitions are given. On the great 
Sunday, "Fiesta of the Crucifixion," I visited the cathedral. 
It is a large and elegant building which cost many thou- 
sands of dollars in gold. It was brilliantly illuminated and 
glistened everywhere with the gorgeous gilding which em- 
bossed the interior. A little to one side of the altar an 
orchestra dispelled music which was soft, doleful and im- 
pressive. The cathedral was filled with men, women and 
children of all ages. The men and women were there be- 
cause they were there in childhood, and the children will 
be there when they are men and women for the same rea- 
son. Many of them appeared moderately intelligent, but 
most of them wore the stamp of ignorance and simplicity. 

No one was seated in the church, because as a rule there 
are no seats in the churches in that country. Some were 
erect and some were upon their knees, and all pushed for- 
ward, gently and without jostle, to reach the altar. 

I elbowed my way to the front and I saw, prone upon 
the floor in a bed of straw, a ful-sized image of Christ. It, 
at least, seemed a misfit. Imagine a full-grown Christ in 
a bed of straw in a manger. 

No one reached the image except on their knees, and 
each kissed the feet and retired in peace. It seemed the 
highest type of idolatrous mockery. 

Mexicans say they believe these images make and place 
themselves in the churches and that they are capable of 
manifesting approval or disapproval by movements of an 
arm or head. They also believe if an effort was made 
to remove one of them from a church, without the consent 


of the priest, it would immediately assume such weight 
a thousand men could not move it. 

A story is told in Mexico, and believed by many, that 
some irreverent wretch attempted to take one into the 
street and immediately as he reached out his hands to take 
hold of the image he became paralyzed. It was only the 
goodness of the priest which averted sudden death. It is 
difficult to believe that such stupidity, superstion, idolatry 
and treachery can exist, to such an alarming extent, in a 
country so near the door of civilization. 

After I had witnessed the kissing of the image and the 
dipping of fingers, often for years unwashed, into the holy 
water, I concluded the church was largely to blame for the 
sad physical as well as mental condition of the people. Not 
less than 80 per cent of my clientele in Mexico was trace- 
able to "blood taint," and it was more than probable the 
kissing of images in the same spot by thousands with 
tainted mouths, and the promiscuous dipping of tainted 
fingers into the same water, were fruitful sources of con- 

The church bleeds its people in many ways. There is 
seldom a day upon which mass is not held, nor a day when 
collection is not taken up. On every hand, everywhere, 
even on the country highways, one encounters fixtures for 
receiving contributions to the church. 

One of the most unbelievable, yet unquestionable, meth- 
ods is the manner in which the church keeps tab on the 
people, more especially upon those who may have become 
disgruntled and refused to pay their quota. For example: 
Every year every man is charged on the church books with 
the amount he should pay, which amount is figured from 
his estimated income. Year after year the charging goes 
on until the man becomes very ill or dies. In the first 
instance he is frightened by the priests, through the women 
of the family, until he yields, agrees to pay up all back 
dues in order to get forgiveness of his sins and avoid ever- 
lasting torment in case he should die. If he refuses and 
dies, then the priests "prey" upon the women. The widow, 
rather than allow her husband to burn in hell forever, is 
led, by the admonitions and pleadings of the priest, to pay 
UP all back dues. Often when the bill is paid the widow 
and orphan children of men of means are left without home 
or food. So, living or dead, the money comes just the same, 


or the man swelters in hell for all time to come. They will 
not forgive the sins without the money. 

It is said that the priests never require the pay for 
holy unction, but I know to the contrary. I was called to 
a man whom I found dying of pneumonia. I told the family 
I could do nothing and that it was time to send for the 
priest, if they wanted him. They sent, but the priest did 
not come, and they told me the priest refused to see the 
man unless two dollars were paid in advance. These 
padres, these apostolic successors, refuse to forgive the 
sins of a man unless the price is paid. 

I was requested by an American friend who was going 
to marry a Mexican girl, to ask the priest the price of the 
ceremony. The priest said it was seventy-five dollars. 
The friend requested me to say to the priest that he posi- 
tively refused to pay the price, but that he would pay fifty 
dollars. The priest agreed to the proposition, but said the 
couple would not be allowed to walk from the door of the 
church to the altar on a carpet. The carpet was removed 
from the aisle and he kept his word. This is, in part, the 
explanation of the fact that the majority of the people of 
the West Coast States of Mexico are really living in adul- 
tery. They cannot pay the price. As evidence of the truth 
of this statement I here give an excerpt from "Mephisto- 
peles," a morning paper published in Culiacan, the capital 
of the State of Sinaloa: "Born, 91; male, 53; female, 38. 
Legitimate, 17; illegitimate, 74." 

In every town and hamlet there exists what is known 
as the "Semanrio." It is a weekly donation of corn and 
beans to the priest by the poor of the ranches. These poor 
devils are required to bring to the priest a small quantity 
of the products mentioned every week. These products are 
collected, sacked and sold, instead of being divided among 
those who hunger right under the eyes of those who profit 
by their sale, and who claim to be imbued with the spirit 
of Christ and the power of God. 

The church bleeds its poor even through the resting 
place of the dead. They bury in cemeteries, and the ceme- 
teries belong to the church. A burial lot, just space enough 
to inter a corpse, is leased to a family and an annual rent 
must be paid. When from poverty, or otherwise, there is 
a failure to pay, the same ground is leased to another and 
the fresh corpse is placed in the same ground, the other 
bones being dug up and thrown aside. As often as there 


is failure to pay the lot is released, and this accounts for 
the great heap of bleaching bones and gaping skulls found 
in the corners of Catholic cemeteries in Mexico. 

Corner in Catholic Cemetery in Mexico 

When a bishop appears upon the streets, always in a 
carriage, every person in sight falls to the knees and re- 
mains down until the man-God passes out of sight. By 
this act everyone believes he or she receives a special bene- 
diction from the high and mighty man whether he sees 
them or not. It is a disgusting scene, smacking of mock- 
ery, blasphemy and ignorance, especially to one who pos- 
sessed the knowledge of the priesthood that I did. 

Far be it from me to traduce the dead, but truth de- 
mands the assertion that it was only because Father 
Damian, who died at the leper settlement on the Island of 
Molokai, was a priest that he was made a martyr of to the 
world. It is not often that a husband contracts leprosy 
from a wife, but it is a well-known fact that his pretty 
Hawaiian housegirl, whom it was also well known he did 
not despise, was a subject of leprosy. Other persons have 
given their lives to the same cause and have never been 
heard of by the world. Of course, goodness of heart often 
prompts these martyrs, but the assurance of a life free 


from the usual anxieties of existence has its influence. 
That priest had everything he desired. He had comfort- 
able home necessities, plenty to wear, and he lived on the 
fat of the land. The scope of his work was limited, but he 
lived like a little King. Who would not rather be a King 
among dogs than a dog among Kings? 

In the State of Chihuahua, Mexico, a priest was impris- 
oned by a naturalized Frenchman who had become a "Jefe 
Politico" for shooting at a man for attempting to enter the 
room of his mistress. The official was dismissed from 
office by the Governor of the State. 

In the State of Durango, Mexico, a priest has three 
children. At least the mother says they are his, and she 
ought to know. No one denies it. 

Another priest in the same State, whom I knew well, 
lived with a woman; that is, he ate at the same table and 
slept in the same room with her. Such things, at least, 
excite suspicion. 

A priest is said to have caused the fall of ten young 
girls in San Sebastian, a town in the State of Jalisco. Not 
wishing to accept rumor as fact, I inquired of many of 
the leading citizens, including the "Alcalde," and they all 
replied in the affirmative. 

"Yes," said the Alcalde, "I personally know some of the 
girls whom he ruined." Strange to say, that Alcalde 
allowed his wife and daughter to go several times a week 
and sit under the sound of that man's voice. I knew this 
priest also, and I attended one of the girls whom he seduced 
at the coming of an heir of the unholy deceiver. 

Perhaps the reader will say these are but isolated in- 
stances. One swallow does not make a summer, etc., etc. 
If these were all, the reader would be right ; but of a truth, 
these are but a few of the many instances which are gen- 
erally known and winked at by the public. You see, a 
priest cannot err in the eyes of his benighted following, 
yet many of them are debauched libertines under the cover 
of religion. 

That the average priest in Mexico is insincere is be- 
lived by many of the more enlightened classes. His influ- 
ence is largely attributable to the ignorance of his follow- 
ing. This is one of the reasons why they oppose immigra- 
tion. They realize that every educated foreigner, not a 
Catholic, who settles in the country is a nail in the coffin 


of Roman Catholicism, and they dislike to hear the ham- 
mer fall. 

The masses in Mexico cannot read or write. There are 
no newspapers published outside of the capital of each 
State; not even in towns of ten to twenty thousand inhab- 
itants. Those who can read are forbidden to read the 
Bible. A Bible in the home of a Mexican is as rare as a 
hairy bird. I traveled over seven States on horseback and 
I never saw a Bible, Catholic or otherwise, except the one 
I had in my grip. Catholics, the ignorant of Mexico, are 
not allowed to think for themselves. The priests carry the 
whole load. 

Catholic priests are human beings endowed with the 
passions of other men, and man is a natural polygamist. 
So, when a natural man, a natural polygamist, claims to 
ignore the opposite sex as the priests do, they may deceive 
some old maids who do not appeal to them, but not men. 
Is it not better to be a benedict than a pervert? 


Traveling anywhere in Mexico, away from the rail- 
roads, one must take bedding or do without. Traveling 
with a bed necessitates a pack mule and a pack mule neces- 
sitates a mozo. 

A mozo (a male Mexican servant) is a thing constructed 
after the fashion of man, but is as far removed from him 
as is possible for a thing of his shape to be. The average 
one is worthless when sober, but when drunk, which is 
every time he can get enough to drink, he is not worthy 
to be classed with cattle. He is a combination of knave 
and knife, of big hat and little brain. He is fond of doing 
nothing, and he does a lot of it. His country has eighty- 
three holidays a year upon which he will not work, and he 
shirks on every other day possible. He wears a white 
shirt, a pair of loose white drawers for pants, a big hat 
and sandals, but never a coat. 

A single blanket takes the place of a coat and a bed, 
regardless of season, and he is never without one. In his 
blanket he conceals his knife and pilfered things. Cold 
or hot, wet or dry, he coils up under his blanket upon the 
ground anywhere and sleeps the guileful sleep of a wolf. 
His sole end and aim of life seems to be to get something 


for nothing, and he usually gets things that way. He hates 
a foreigner whom he fails to skin, and he has a contempt 
for one he can skin. He never tells the truth except by 
accident, and he is absolutely unreliable in every way, ex- 
cept when there is hope of gain. Good or bad, he demands 
the same daily compensation. If he furnishes himself with 
food a few beans and tortillas will suffice, but if you sup- 
ply him food disappears like corn in a mill hopper, and he 
fattens like a goo tacked to the floor. 

Foreigners say the Mexican is just a grown-up child 
and should be treated as such. He is, indeed, childlike and 
bland, but in chicanery he is a past master. He feigns 
ignorance to deceive you. He is more shrewd than a com- 
bination of fox and wolf. He recognizes the importance 
of doing the other fellows and he attends strictly to that 
phase of business. He never has a thought of a mutually 
beneficial transaction, hence he never commits an act un- 
less he is convinced he is doing the other fellows. He is 
most polite to his bitterest enemy. 

The fact that there is no Jews in Mexico speaks louder 
than words. A Jew would starve to death at the elbow of 
a Mexican. He can beat the Jew at his own game. 

In the courts there is no jury trial outside of the large 
cities, and there is no oath administered to the witnesses. 
Evidence is taken by some petty official anywhere the 
witness happens to be. My evidence has been taken in 
my own house and I witnessed the taking of evidence in 
the street a day or two before the prisoner was tried. 

Witnesses are asked to tell what they know about the 
case, and they know enough to tell just what they think 
the trial judge would want them to say. Leading and sug- 
gestive questioning soon show him where to head in. A 
prisoner does not always know what charge has been 
brought against him until the trial is over, much less does 
he know what the witnesses have said. 

When a man has a grievance he has the other fellow 
arrested. Guilty or not guilty, the prisoner goes to jail 
without investigation, and is given opportunity to prove his 
innocence afterward. 

It is a difficult thing to convict anyone of anything in 
Mexico, for there must be two uncontroverted witnesses to 
every act. It is not obligatory on the part of the prosecu- 
tion to prove guilt. One must prove innocence or suffer. 
No woman can be used in the court trial. She is not 


admitted as a witness for or against anyone. Her word 
has not the value of a broken reed in her own country ; nor 
can any employe of the accused, nor any relative by blood 
or marriage, nor any particular friend, testify in behalf of 
the accused in any manner of a court trial. This is the 
written law of the country, but no official observes the 
law if it suits his purpose to do otherwise. 

I once made a test as to whether I could collect my bills 
by law or not by suing a man for thirty dollars. I won the 
case; at least that was the generally expressed opinion of 
all present, but the judge refused to decide it, stating he 
would send the case to a higher court for decision because 
both parties to the suit were friends of his. I insisted 
upon a decision, in accordance with the law and the evi- 
dence, but the judge said: "I will not decide it; that man 
belongs to my church." The judge was the organist in 
the Catholic Church at Ayutla, State of Jalisco, Mexico. 
The case was sent up and was never heard of again. 

A man was arrested for that grave charge for which 
men are lynched in some countries. He was kept in jail 
five days while his "trial" was going on. He named the 
girls father as his witness. He did not know who else was 
giving testimony in the case, nor did he know what any 
witness had said. Later the judge told me the man had 
been liberated because there was no evidence against him 
and his innocence had been established. Then came an 
astounding declaration: "We fined him five dollars and 
let him go," said the judge. 

"What ?" said I, "no evidence against him after a week 
in jail and you fined him five dollars and let him go ! How 
on earth could you do such a thing?" 

"Well, you see, doctor," said Judge Tubercio Bacero of 
Lluvia de Oro mine in the State of Sinaloa, Mexico, "it cost 
us something to arrest him and the other fellow had no 

If a man kidnaps and rapes a woman he will say he 
had her consent, and that ends it, as her word will not be 
considered in a court. If she is under fourteen years of 
age, the age of consent, the man will deniy it, and as there 
must be two witnesses to every act in order to have a con- 
viction, he goes free. These assertions are not guesswork — 
I have seen them exemplified. 



On the Island of Hawaii there is a sugar plantation on 
which there is a famous gulch which is usually dry. In 
the center of this gulch, about three miles up from the 
main road which encircles the island, there is a large rock 
about four feet high which the Hawaiians call "The Rain 
God." It is a peculiarly formed stone and requires no vivid 
imagination to see its resemblance to a large man stooping 
down with a blanket drawn over him. 

This particular gulch is situated between the wet and 
the dry sections of the island and sometimes rain is needed 
there. When such is the case the Hawaiians go to the 
god, worship it and pray for rain. There is never any 
great length of time between rains, so the native believes 
he brings it by his prayers. 

Many persons visit the god regularly and deposit money 
upon it, which is taken away, of course, by the unbelievers. 
Sometimes it is richly decorated with beautiful wreaths, 
and it is never without flowers of some kind upon it. 

On one occasion I and Mr. Searls who lived on a plan- 
tation about half way between the god and the sea, went 
up the gulch to examine the god. We found a number of 
Hawaiians there upon their knees praying to the god for 
rain. They had made beautiful floral offerings and the 
god was enveloped in flowers of all colors of the rainbow. 
To disabuse their minds of the faith they had in the 
rain god we demolished the flowers, tore up the wreaths 
and threw them on the ground. Then we chastised the 
stone with our riding whips and invited it to revenge. 

The Hawaiians immediately began to pray for us. They 
begged the god to do us no harm because we knew not the 
gravity of our offense. The main spokesman of the Ha- 
waiians assured Searls and me that we were in great dan- 
ger, and said he would not be surprised if heavy rain fell 
upon us before we could reach the Searls home. 

Then followed a most singular occurrence. Heavy black 
clouds gathered above the god, and by the time we reached 
home and stabled our horses the rain came down in fear- 
ful torrents. The whole world seemed darkened and the 
heavens seemed to pour out an accumulation of years. A 
breast of water came down the gulch several feet high and 
carried nearly everything in its path. It washed away 


fences and brought down stones of various sizes from a 
pebble to hundreds of pounds. The flower garden and the 
fruit trees were destroyed, the yard was left dry and cov- 
ered with rocks, and resembled a rough and rugged moun- 
tainside. It was a mystery the house was not tumbled to 

It was afterward still more impossible to shake the 
Hawaiian's faith in his Rain God. 



While practicing medicine in the Sierra Madre Moun- 
tains of Mexico I was called to a patient who lived at a 
small town called Urique. Urique was just two days away. 
Distances are estimated by the time it requires one to 
reach any certain point in a walk. For instance, the town 
of Parral was four hours away, and Chico Ranch was only 
two hours away. 

I left the mine at which I was employed, after an early 
breakfast, accompanied by a mozo and a pack mule which 
took food, bedding and other things necessary for the trip. 
Every point of the compass was made and I traveled along 
the zigzag trail which wound in and out of coves, up and 
down mountainsides, over rocks, under rocks and across 
stony gulches. I had but the two animals. Most mozos 
travel on foot and will trot along behind you all day, appar- 
ently without fatigue. 

Late in the afternoon of the first day I dismounted to 
tighten my saddle girth, and the pack mule strolled to one 
side to eat grass. The mozo, in attempting to get her back 
upon the trail, started her off toward the mine. He tried 
to catch her, but she was not to be caught by such an 
empty-headed animal as the idiot who trotted directly be- 
hind her. It never occurred to him if he would stop 
the animal would stop also. It was easy to cut across some 
bend of the crooked trail and get in front of her, but he 
simply trotted leisurely behind her and was soon out of 

It had been cloudy all of the afternoon and it began to 
rain. It was the wet season of the year when it rains 
every day, and at such time the trails are very dangerous. 
The gulches fill quickly with water and it flows down in 
perfect torrents. At such times neither man nor beast 


can cross them. However, one has to wait but a short time, 
for in a few minutes the water is gone. It pours down 
stream as from a houstop, and each gulch successively 
empties into a larger gulch below, until on reaching the 
river the water is emptied into the sea. 

On account of the rainstorm the night seemed to come 
on suddenly and was very dark. I did not try to reach 
a small village which was not far ahead on account of a 
large gulch which intervened and must be dangerously 
filled with water. Besides this, the trails were numerous 
and unknown to me. I remembered having seen an Indian 
hut but a little way back, so I groped my way to it through 
the darkness, leading my mule and many times feeling for 
the trail with my hands. The hut was reached with diffi- 
culty, the blackest darkness prevailed within and without. 
The door was open, which I could see by an occasional flash 
in the heavens, but how dared I enter? Who knew there 
were no Indians within? What assurance had I that no 
outlaws, lions, tigers or deadly reptiles had taken refuge 
there ? I wanted to get out of the rain and I wanted some- 
thing dry with which to kindle a fire, and to secure these 
much-needed commodities I must take a chance. 

I stepped into the door of the hut with pistol in hand 
ready to shoot at anything which offered resistance, and 
I struck a match as I entered the threshold. The hut 
proved to be empty and I tried to lead the mule into it, but 
she would not enter. I pulled vigorously upon the reins, 
but she would not budge a foot. I struck another match 
and saw that my pants legs were black and I beat a hasty 
retreat. I had entered a flea hatchery, so common in 

Guided by vivid flashes of lightning, I found a few long 
planks leaning against a pole pen, and I took refuge be- 
neath them. Sheltered by the planks, all alone with my 
conscience and my thoughts, I spent a miserable, wretched 
night. I had nothing to eat and nothing to drink except 
the rain water which coursed down the planks and was 
caught in my hands. I had no bed, not even a blanket, 
and I was wet and cold. Though terribly against my will, 
I had simply to stand erect and watch and wait through the 
livelong night. Truly the hours of a dark and stormy night 
grow long and monotonous to one situated as I was. Alone 
in a foreign country, in rough and rugged mountains, sur- 
rounded by bad Indians, by native cut-throats, ferocious 


wild beasts, venomous reptiles and poisonous insects, and 
not an English-speaking person within fifty miles. Surely 
the time dragged heavily. Each moment seemed an hour 
and the night seemed the length of a whole lifetime. 

When the morning came there was no sign of the mozo, 
and the saddle mule also was gone. She had slipped the 
bridle, for it was hanging on the tree to which she had 
been tied. A long search revealed her at the bottom of 
a deep canyon, and when I approached her she refused my 
fellowship. With much difficulty I enforced submission 
with a lasso which had been attached to the bridle. 

I mounted the mule bareback and started for the hut 
where the saddle was left. While ascending the side of 
a gulch the mule lost footing and fell into a deep hole from 
which she could not extricate herself. I almost wrecked 
my brain in the endeavor to devise means of the mule's 
deliverance. If left in the hole she would starve to death, 
or be drowned in the next rain, though the water was now 
not deep enough to submerge her. There was never a time 
when I needed a mule more. Thinking if there was no 
hole for the mule to stand in she would be able to walk 
away, I fell to the task of filling the hole with rocks. As 
the hole was filled the mule rose higher and higher until 
she met her preserver on the level. 

When the hut was reached and the saddle adjusted the 
journey was resumed. When the little village across the 
gulch was reached a hearty meal of tortillas (thin corn 
hoecakes) and huevos (eggs) was enjoyed. 

Learning nothing of the lost mozo, another was em- 
ployed and the journey renewed. In a short time Urique 
was in sight. Being in sight does not always mean near 
by, and many hours were required to reach the town. 
Urique is on a river of the same name and looks, in the 
distance, like a lot of large boulders bunched along a snake's 
trail. On descending the mountain one frequently passes 
over points in the trail so steep the mule seems almost to 
stand on her head, and at other times it is almost impos- 
sible to keep the animal from falling over backward. The 
trail is blasted out of the side of the mountain and is so 
narrow that at times one foot of a man in the saddle scrapes 
along the side of the rocky heights on one side, while the 
other dangles over a precipice so high that one misstep of 
the mule would hurl man and beast to the bottom of the 
gulch a thousand feet below. 


When I reached Urique I had as yet heard nothing of 
my first mozo, or the mule. Fortunately I had in my pocket 
sufficient medicine for the immediate demands of the pa- 
tient, and the rest was sent later. 

On the following morning, while on my return trip, I 
encountered the lost mozo and mule. The mozo had caught 
her, but not until she had rolled down a fifty-foot incline 
with the pack still fast to her back. Both she and the pack 
were in a sad plight. Everything was dirty and wet, and 
the mule wore a sad, faraway and battered countenance. 
Her ears hung down and she looked tired and hungry. The 
medicine bags were out of shapes, bottles broken, medicine 
slipped, and things generally presented a disreputable 

To get out of Urique is a difficult task. It is an almost 
constant climb for many hours and is fatiguing to man 
and beast. One may travel for hours and Urique will still 
be in sight. Four hours after leaving the town it seemed 
I could throw a stone back into the main street. 

I exchanged the new mozo for the old one, and I ate 
a breakfast of goat's milk cheese and tortillas, which had 
been provided before leaving the patient's house. 

Notwithstanding my saddle mule had proved a good one, 
she was fallible, and I was in constant dread of the treach- 
erous, wet tarils. They were well water-soaked, and in the 
wet season many landslides, large and small, occur. 

On the second day of travel, when I was nearing my 
home, I had occasion to make a short curve around the 
head of a gulch. A small slide had lodged upon the trail 
and the mule rose upon it. The jostle, induced by the mule 
jumping upon it, dislodged it and it resumed its downward 
course. At first it moved slowly, but it increased in speed 
as it passed down the steep incline. It was a ride uncoveted 
and unique, and was fraught with danger to life and limb. 

Strange to say, the mule stood stockstill and did not 
seem to realize the situation in the least. But I did. I was 
filled with dread, and as I passed along where the trees 
leaned toward the gulch I seized the first limb which came 
within reach, and I was left swinging in the air. With 
great joy at my deliverance I climbed to earth again all 
safe and sound. But the mule went down to the bottom like 
a car with a broken steering rod, and broke her neck. 

I climbed upon the pack mule, which had been coming 


slowly on behind, and left the mozo to bring my saddle 

T h i r.t y - N i n t h 


On the west coast of Mexico the stages are called 
"Dilligencias" and are of the old, old type of the last cen- 
tury. They are drawn by ten mules, two of which are at 
the tongue and eight are in front, harnessed four abreast. 
They travel day and night, changing mules every fifteen 
miles, and give about the only evidence of quick movement 
seen in that section of country. 

Down every slope and upon every level the driver 
whoops, yells and whips the mules with a long keen lash 
which he handles so dexterously he strikes even the most 
distant mule in just the spot he wishes, and nearly every 
crack brings the blood. The little animals travel under 
constant fright and run as though escaping some unseen 
monster. The second coachman plays the part of fireman 
and he works harder than a man in a coal bin. He runs 
along upon the ground, whipping first one mule and then 
another, and strange to say he whips the most willing mule 
the most. Through him and the driving coachman the 
mules are soon forced into a run. Then the second coach- 
man springs upon the stage step and remains there until 
it is necessary to apply his inhuman torture again. 

The stages constitute the Government mail trains and 
they take passengers, but are not particular whom they 
transport. When the rainy season begins the stages cease 
to operate and the mail is carried upon the backs of mules. 

I once climbed into one of these stages at night. I could 
not distinguish my fellow-passengers, but I soon knew 
there was something radically wrong. A vile odor almost 
felled me at the stage door, but I got in and took a seat. 
Looking around I observed a man completely covered up, 
only his eyes were exposed to view. The man frequently 
placed his head again the back of my seat, and sometimes 
rubbed his head against my back. This was not conducive 
to comfort, so I placed a handkerchief over my face and 
leaned forward out of reach of the man and went to sleep. 
Although I did not dream of the invalid, my nap was cut 
rather short. I was awakened by the intensity of the 
stench. The curtains of the stage had been drawn down 


on account of the cool night breeze, and the sick man had 
removed the coverings from his face. Like a frightened 
squirrel I climbed to the top of the stage, where I remained 
among the trunks and valises until a stop was made for 

Everyone got out of the stage except the invalid, and 
it was seen that he was a leper. His fingers were twisted 
and knotted, his face was out of shape and sloughing, and 
he presented a sight at once hiedous and pathetic. 

There were American and Mexican passengers on the 
stage and when I explained the nature of the disease from 
which the man was suffering the Mexicans threatened to 
shoot the despised wretch if he did not leave the stage. 

I remonstrated strongly. I said they would no doubt 
confer a favor upon the poor creature if they would kill 
him, and they probably would never be interfered with by 
the law, but it would be a cold-blooded murder for which 
they would be held accountable by their God. The proper 
authorities had accepted the man's money for his seat and 
he had an equal right in the stage with anyone else. It 
was their privilege to leave the stage if they cared to do 
so, but they had no right, moral or otherwise, to molest 
the leper. 

The passengers were pacified for a time, but when the 
stage reached a strip of wooded country a few miles from 
the breakfast house the Mexicans forced the leper from 
the stage. They tied the poor creature to a tree and made 
the driver urge the stage mules away as fast as they could 
go. The unfortunate afflicted man was left to whatever 
fate might befall him. 

"As ye sow, so shall ye reap," and it was not long before 
those cruel wretches reaped in part their reward. But the 
reward was not commensurate with their vile deed. They 
were only in a measure repaid for their evidence of man's 
inhumanity to man. 

The country was infested with ladrones, and before the 
stage emerged from the skirt of timber in which the leper 
had been left it came to a sudden halt. A dozen guns met 
the gaze of the men on the top of the stage as well as of 
those within, and several voices cried "Hands up!" 

The male passengers were all armed, but they knew any 
faulty effort at resistance would mean certain death. The 
surprise was as sudden as it was great, so all submitted 
without a word. One by one they were made to get out 


of the stage and were robbed of everything they possessed. 
Then each in turn was stripped of every vestige of cloth- 
ing and made to get back into the stage as nude as when 
they first sprang into the atmosphere of existence. The 
drivers were then given orders to take the stage away, 
and they lost no time in doing so. The mules were promptly 
urged into a run and were kept in a run until out of sight 
of the hideous masks which hid the faces of the robbers. 
Then the driver stopped the stage and gave each passenger 
a few old newspapers to be used as clothing. He said they 
were the only things the robbers would not take from him, 
so he constantly went prepared for emergencies like that. 
The papers were adjusted to the bodies of each individual, 
male and female, as best they could be, and the stage went 
rolling on down the road. 

How impossible it is to describe the feelings of one 
robbed upon the public highway under such circumstances. 
Each individual sat in the stage as before, except that he 
was neither barefoot nor shod, nor possessed of mineral 
or metallic substance; and each was as silent as the tomb 
of Hiram, the widow's son. 


Julian Medina, a noted revolutionary robber of Mexico, 
with three hundred armed men, demanded the surrender 
of a mine at which I was engaged as physician, There 
were but four Americans at the mine at the time, Messrs. 
Hordly, Mitchell, Neal and myself. A hasty council of war 
was held. Each of the little group said fight, but the 
manager of the mine thought the mine might be better 
protected by a compromise, and it was agreed that an 
attempt at compromise would first be made. Failing in 
this, a fight would ensue. The bandits were notified there 
was no such thing as surrender, but that they might 
approach the gate for parley. 

The gate was a part of a rock wall ten feet high which 
was built around the store, office, dormitory, restaurant, 
etc., for protection. In each corner of the rock fence there 
was a tower which reached six feet above the fence. There 
were peepholes in each of the four sides of each tower 
through which one might observe the four directions — in 


fact, in every direction — and a lot of shooting could be 
done through them if necessary. 

General Del Toro, of the Mexican Federal Army, was 
stationed four hours away from the mine, which means it 
would require four hours for a man to cover the distance 
in a walk. 

Del Toro was notified of the approach of the robbers, 
and he promised to pursue them at once. 

I and two of the Americans stationed ourselves in three 
of the towers, well prepared to fight, and the manager met 
the robbers at the gate. They came down from the high 
mountains and could be seen a long time before they 
reached the mine. They came in groups of twenty or more, 
each group being in advance of the other about seventy- 
five yards. They were in single file and the leader of the 
first group carried a blood-red flag about four feet square. 
The trail led within fifty yards of my tower and just across 
a deep gulch where the road had been blasted out of the 
side of the stony gulch. I was dressed in white and could 
be plainly seen, as I had opened to full width every aper- 
ture in my tower. As soon as the robbers were opposite 
my tower they saw me, and every man except the flagman 
fell from his horse, hid behind the rocks and pointed his 
gun at me. 

I threw my rifle to my shoulder and pointed it at the 
flagman, the only one who did not dismount. We had 
agreed not to shoot unless at some one who might attempt 
to scale the back wall, so I resisted temptation, which was 
very great, and held my fire notwithstanding I momentarily 
expected the group to fire on me. It was truly a soul-trying 
moment, but it did not continue long, for as suddenly as 
they had dismounted they mounted again and made all 
haste to reach the gate. They came in a run, whooping 
any yelling like so many demons from hell. 

Having reached the gate, they demanded that it be 
opened. The manager refused the demand and they threat- 
ened to dynamite it. "I will open the gate," said the man- 
ager to Julian, the chief, "if you only will come in. I am 
here alone." 

"All right," said the chief. "Open it. I promise." 

The gate was opened and the chief stepped in, followed 
by one and then another until the manager attempted to 
close it. 

"No, you shall not close the gate," said the chief, and 


he said to his men: "Do not allow this gate closed under 
any circumstances. Allow no one to enter, nor anyone to 
pass out. Watch closely, and at the sound of the first gun 
you hear, kill everyone in sight and dynamite the whole 

The chief and those who had followed him through the 
gate were invited into the office, where a compromise was 
made. They were to accept five hundred dollars in cash 
and five hundred dollars in values from the store ; take all 
horses and arms, except those of the manager, and rob the 
Mexican citizens of whatever arms and animals they pos- 

We were then. called from the towers and with ten of 
the robbers entered the store. 

The chief was a tall, thin, raw-boned Indian and wore 
a hat not less than three feet across from one side of the 
brim to the other. He perched himself upon a small box 
placed upon a very large box and looked a veritable imp of 
His Satanic Majesty. 

The goods were being selected and ordered out by him. 
In a facetious attempt at levity, with a sinister smile upon 
his broad, brown face, he said to one of the clerks : "Give 
me some handkerchiefs. I want two. One for my nose 
and one for my eyes when I cry." 

Immediately I said to him: "Chief, you would better 
take three." 

In a puzzled, yet astonished manner, he asked: "Why 
should I take three? I said I wanted two handkerchiefs. 
Now, why do I want three?" 

"Well," said I, "you want one for your nose and one 
for your eyes when you cry, as you say, and you will need 
the third one to stop that hole General Del Toro is going 
to put through your belly now very soon." I was momen- 
tarily expecting the arrival of General Del Toro with his 
four hundred well armed men. As soon as I had finished 
my reply to the chief every robber in the store stopped 
instantly as still as death and peered fiercely at me. For 
a moment I feared I had spoken rashly and unwisely, and 
there flashed before my eyes a picture of myself blind- 
folded and standing before a firing squad. For a moment 
a pin could have been heard to drop. The moments were 
strenuous, and it was a relief when the chief turned away 
with a forced smile and told his men to go on with their 


work. General Del Toro with his one hundred majority 
never did come. 

Later another band of robbers came, and they killed 
Hordly and Mitchell and stabbed Neal five times in the 
back, but he escaped and recovered. 

Forty- First 


At one time I was physician to a mine far up in the 
mountains of the State of Jalisco, Mexico. I occupied a 
house alone, down in a large gulch, which received its water 
from many others and poured it into the Santiago River. 
My residence adjoined my office so it was convenient, if it 
was dangerous, to reside outside of a ten-foot rock fence 
which had been erected for the protection of the Ameri- 
cans who were employed at the mine. 

Some of the Mexicans employed by the mining com- 
pany became discontented at having 2 per cent of their 
earnings appropriated by the company to the support of 
the hospital department, and it was supposed they at- 
tempted to destroy that institution. At any rate I was 
aroused one night, about the hour of twelve, by the most 
terrific explosion I had ever heard. Half stunned by the 
shock, I brushed the trash from my face, which had fellen 
from the ceiling and the walls. 

I believed it was dynamite and must have been meant 
for me. Momentarily I expected another blast which would 
transport me to the land of the sky. 

I thought of my gun and I recalled the fact that I had 
left it within the rock wall, where I had taken it three 
days before when the mine was visited by robbers. I also 
thought of my pistol, but it had been left in my office, 
and to get it I would have to go out to my house, so I was 
absolutely defenseless. I quietly slipped from bed and 
peeped through the door and window. Seeing nothing and 
hearing nothing, I returned to bed fully expecting another 
blast. I got back into bed firmly believing it would be 
my last effort at limited rest. The moments were indeed 
trying and it was some time before I went to sleep again, 
but I did, and when I awoke in the morning I found a hole 
in the ground in front of my door which told clearly the 
tale of the night. 

The dynamite had been thrown from the hillside where 


the road zigzaged up the mountain above the house, and it 
was thrown with such force it escaped the house, passing 
just above it and reached the ground in front of the door. 
There was a hole in the ground which showed the power 
of dynamite. Concussion had dangerously riven the walls 
of the house and broken the panes of glass. 

The manager of the mine urged me to sleep within the 
rock fence, but I refused to do so, and I remained one 
month more in the same house. 


In company with a gentleman I went up into the Sierra 
Madre Mountains of Mexico to examine machinery which 
had been left in my care, and which was for sale. It was 
an abandoned mine in a desolate region far from any occu- 
pied habitation of any kind. There was a rock wall lying 
between the machinery and the abandoned houses of the 
mine. The wall was covered with vines and hid the houses 
from the view of any person who might be at the ma- 

We heard the familiar sound of blankets being flapped in 
the air to rid them of moisture or dust, and we also heard 
low whistling and voices. We had been told that Vecinte 
Real and his band of thirty robbers had depredated on the 
day before and had gone up into those mountains. During 
the mentioned depredation Real had cut the soles from the 
feet of a Mexican farmer, cut off his ears, made him walk 
over rough stones and then shot him. Then the band 
sacked the house and carried his two daughters and his 
pretty wife up into those mountains. It is the ladrone 
custom to take women in this way and retain them until 
they can secure others. 

When the noises alluded to were heard I proposed to 
peep a little and learn who the persons were, but my friend 
did not agree with me. 

"For God's sake, no," said he. "Let us finish our work 
and get away as quickly as possible. Do nothing to let 
them think we know they are here." At that moment we 
were startled by the command: 

"Lavantan sus manos!" (Lift up your hands!) 
We threw up our hands as we turned around and we 
looked down the throats of fifteen Mauser rifles which 


rested on the fence. Each iron throat seemed to gap to 
the fullest extent, and they resembled six-inch boiler flues. 
We knew any antagonistic movement meant death, so we 
obeyed every command. We held our hands up until we 
were robbed of everything we possessed, except our clothes. 

We were then told our hearts would not be taken be- 
cause we could not replace them, but such as had been 
taken might be replaced. For that small courtesy we were 
very grateful, and we raised no objections when we were 
told to "Irse a pia." (Hike on foot.) 

Our horses, of course, became bandits. 



Notice was received at a mine in Mexico, where I was 
engaged, that twenty-one bandits had sacked a mine far 
up in the mountain heights, and the one white man living 
there, who was managing the place, had taken refuge in 
the tunnel of the mine and was held there by the bandits. 

Six Americans, two from each of three neighboring 
mines, went to the rescue, and it required a hard all-night 
climb to reach the place. Mr. Kelly and I represented one 
of the mines. 

During the first two hours the Sanitago River had to 
be crossed. We went over in a boat and the horses were 
jumped into the water and the chance taken of getting 
them again on the other side of the river. After all of 
the horses had been recovered except mine, I started out 
alone in the dark to search for it. 

There was a small village on that side of the river, just 
a few shacks — "huacals" — occupied by abettors of bandits 
and frequented by roving bands of robbers. There was 
just starlight enough for me to see the outlines of large 
objects. Feeling my way through the brush which hid 
the houses from view I was tripped by a wire and thrown 
violently to the ground. I really believed I had been 
tripped by bandits, and as I fell to the ground I resigned 
myself to what seemed to be the inevitable. But the wire 
was that of an abandoned fence. 

I saw a light in the distance and I wended my way to 
it. Around the light, which was a fire in front of a hut, 
I encountered the most brutish-looking body of men I had 
ever seen. I promptly told them I had been sent there 


in search of a horse by a body of Americans who were on 
that side of the river quite near by. I said this because 
I knew no Mexican would commit a vile act if there 
seemed any possibility of a comeback. They never offer 
an affront or resent an insult publicly. Their method is 
bushwhacking, pure and simple. A fair fight is never seen 
in Mexico, but assassinations are numerous. 

Those at the fire, unshaven and unshorn, denied having 
seen the horse and I passed on, but I saw the horse tied 
to a tree some distance from the house, and I took it down 
to the river, saddled it and proceeded with the rest of the 

The lone man's mine was reached just at daylight, and 
the six of us rushed into the little village at the mouth of 
the mine, from six different directions, with gun in hand 
ready to shoot at anyone in the garb of a bandit. 

The bandits had heard of our approach and had fled. 
It is astonishing how they communicate with each other. 
They seem to learn of every coming event, no matter how 
secretive others may be. 

On returning with the rescued man on the following 
night our party was accompanied by a party of frightened 
Mexicans who were taking advantage of American protec- 
tion to get into a safer land. From six, our party had 
increased to twenty-three. 

Mr. Richards, who was one of the party, and I were 
better mounted than the rest and because of the fact that 
a cavalcade cannot travel faster than its solwest horse, we 
found ourselves far in advance of the rest of the crowd. 
The trails are so winding through those lofty mountains 
and gulches one cannot at times see a man behind him 
even if no more than fifty feet to the rear. As we were 
in advance of the rest we decided to push on a little faster, 
and have something to eat prepared at a house which had 
been passed as we went up the mountain. We pushed 
along with some haste, and it was not long before we dis- 
covered we were lost, notwithstanding it was a brightly 
moonlit night. We retraced our footsteps for a great dis- 
tance, and not encountering our friends it was sure they 
had left the trail. It was certain the crowd had turned 
from the road Richards and I were on. 

We stopped our horses and Mr. Richards whistled, but 
there was no response. Then he whooped, but only the 


sound of his voice was lost in the distance. Then he gave 
a mighty yell, but there was no reply. 

Recalling the fact that two shots fired in quick succes- 
sion was the hunter's call, I fired my pistol twice in the 
air. No sooner had I done so than we were greeted by 
a rain of bullets. The missiles flew over us as thick as 
legs on a centipede, and many were uncomfortably close. 

"There they are," said I. "Let's ge to them as quickly 
as possible. They surely have encountered bandits." 

"Let's get down and walk," said Richards. 

"No, I am no pedestrian. I'll stick to my horse," I 
replied as we rode in the direction of the firing, believing 
our friends were between us and the bandits. 

Upon entering an opening, that is, a place where there 
were no tall trees, we saw the body of a man above the 
bushes, which were as tall as his horse. I covered the 
man with my gun and asked who he was. 

"I am a good man. Please do not shoot me," said the 
fellow. He stated he was on the way to a house just below, 
but as there was a fight there he would not go. He was 
offered five dollars to show the trail leading to that house, 
because it was believed the lost crowd was there, but the 
man refused. Then, in order to induce him to show the 
trail, and without dreaming I was even in part telling the 
truth, I told the fellow there was no fighting; that friends 
were shooting to let us know where they were. The man 
believed the story and led the way down to the house. 

To my great amazement, our whole party had taken 
refuge behind a rock fence and had fired in every direc- 
tion, thinking, they said, that Richards and I had been 

How easily we might have been killed by our friends! 



Where mines in Mexico were not more than four or 
five hours apart I usually had the medical care of several 
at the same time. 

One morning while passing up the mountain which laid 
between my habitation and the mine I intended visiting, 
I found a note pinned to a leaf which hung over the trail 
in such a manner it was impossible to pass without seeing 
it. I took the note down and read it. It was written in 


Spanish and when interpreted it stated: "Do not go up 
this hill today. If you attempt it you will never reach the 

I handed the note to a mozo, who had asked permission 
to accompany me over the mountain and was riding close 
behind. The mozo read the note and turned pale. He be- 
seeched me to turn back. This, of course, I would not do. 
I told the mozo he might return if he cared to do so, or, he 
might ride a distance behind me and in the event of trou- 
ble he could fly for his life. 

I took my gun from the scabbard, put in shells heavily 
loaded with buckshot, placed my pistol in front of my body 
where it would be in full view, and proceeded up the moun- 
tain. I was followed by the mozo in the distance. The 
poor devil had actually vomited from fright. 

All foreigners went armed in the mining districts, not 
for the purpose of using them but to prevent their use, as 
no one will attack an armed man in Mexico. 

After a short time two men were seen on the trail, 
quite a distance in front, but they were near enough for 
me to see that they wore the characteristic three belts. 
A bandit usually wears three belts, one around the waist, 
one slung over the right shoulder passing around the left 
side, and another over the left shoulder passing around 
the right side. 

The trail was tortous and led up to and across a diminu- 
tive plateau called "The Saddle" because of its striking 
resemblance to a saddle. The mountain rises to the right 
and to the left as do the cantle and the horn of a saddle. 

The distance between me and the bandits grew less and 
less and when they reached "The Saddle" they separated, 
one stationing himself at either side of the trail about fifty 
feet from it. 

I rode between them with gun in hand and watched 
them both by changing my eyes quickly from one to the 
other. Not a word was spoken, nor a movement made, 
No Mexican ladrone will take chances. He must have 
absolute advantage or he will do nothing. Preparedness 
in Mexico means safety, except from ambush. 

On the return trip I was accompanied by Mr. Beard, 
the manager of the mine I had visited, and his mozo. That 
manager had been recently kidnaped and a ransom of five 
hundred dollars paid for his release. Just before reaching 
the top of the mountain we were met by a man coming in 


a swift run. He threw up his hands in horror and begged 
us to return to the manager's mine. He said there were 
six bandits at a spring on the trail who swore no man 
should pass that way. Through fright the man had nearly 
run himself out of breath. He was a picture of despair, 
but his condition was not contagious. I said to the man- 
ager just what I had said to the mozo in the morning: 
"We have just as much right on this trail as anyone else, 
and if you will come on I will lead the way. I will ride 
a distance in advance of you, and your mozo will ride some 
distance behind you. In this way we will be safe, at least, 
in less danger." 

We proceeded on over the mountain, through "The Sad- 
dle" and down on the trail in the direction of the spring; 
I led by fifty yards and the mozo was fifty yards behind 
the manager. We were each prepared with gun in hand 
for anything which might develop on the way. Momenta- 
rily we expected to meet the bandits, or to be fired upon 
from ambush, but there was no one at the spring, nor was 
anyone encountered on the trail. 

Evidently the bandits had seen our guns, which declared 
readiness, and they had hidden in the brush. We were 
too widely separated for ambush. The bandits might have 
killed one of the party, but the chances were that one of 
them would be shot by the others, and enither desired to 
be the one shot. 



Nearly all men traveling in Mexico on horseback take 
along a mozo, a Mexican valet. I preferred traveling alone 
for the reason the average mozo wil stop for conversa- 
tion with every peon he meets, and cause delay. Again, 
he will divulge ones movements, which places one at a 
great disadvantage in avoiding bandits, with whom the 
mozo may be in league.. 

By a long rope I always led an extra horse, well 
equipped. By changing horses occasionally I could make 
faster time, and should one be shot from under me I might 
be able to mount the other and advance. The long lead 
rope was used so as to separate the animals as much as 
possible and avoid the possibility of one bullet putting both 
out of commission at the same time. 


When traveling it was my habit to stop at some village 
early in the afternoon and have my animals cared for just 
as though I intended to remain in the town for a length 
of time. After midnight I would arise from bed and pre- 
pare for the continuance of the journey. Then I would 
call the hotel mozo, who sleeps just within the front door, 
the only door to the building; that door through which all 
men, mules and horses, dogs, hogs, fowl and provender 
must enter. I would then hire the mozo to saddle my 
horses, mount one of them and lead the way to the suburbs 
of the town and place me in the road leading to the next 

Leaving Las Penas, a town on the coast of the State of 
Jalisco, at three o'clock in the morning, and being placed 
in the road leading to San Sebastian, I dismissed the mozo 
and proceeded on my way. 

About four o'clock in the morning my horse fell sud- 
denly to the ground, turning a half somersault. He re- 
mained upon the ground with his tail where his head should 
have been. But I did not fall. I just walked on over the 
horse's head as he went down and I was out of the way of 
the animal's hips before they reached the ground. I 
thought the horse had been tripped by a rope stretched 
across the road, or had been lassoed around the front feet 
by bandits. Such has been many times done since the 
days of "Liberty," which means to the average peon, privi- 
lege to rob. 

I stood alone in the black darkness of the night, and 
unarmed. I was helpless against any attack by man or 
beast. My pistol and gun were on the saddle, and a few 
moments of anxiety passed like moments under a surgeon's 
knife without an anesthetic. To procure my arms was a 
desideratum, so I moved over to the horse, which was still 
lying upon the ground. I secured my pistol and being 
assured the horse was neither roped nor injured I forced 
it to rise notwithstanding; its reluctance to do so. 

Becoming convinced the fall was the fault of the horse, 
I mounted the other animal and led the one which had 

Proceeding on the journey, the road led through a dense 
jungle of many miles in breadth. Through this jungle it 
was necessary to pass in order to reach the foothills of the 
mountains beyond, in which the town of San Sebastian 
was located. 


It was still very dark, and the darkness was intensified 
by the foliage of the underbrush and trees. Tigers, Mexi- 
can lions, panthers, wolves and many small animals abound 
in this jungle, but I dreaded most the two-footed beasts 
that wear sandals and bear machetes, or cheese knives. 

At a moment when my thoughts were deeply engrossed 
in the possibilities in store for me before reaching the 
foothills, if indeed I ever did, I was struck upon the throat 
and jerked backward until my head struck the root of the 
horse's tail. Suddenly I raised my chin to the fullest ex- 
tent and whatever it was which had caught me by the 
throat glided over my face. In an instant I arose to a sit- 
ting posture in the saddle and at that same moment the 
horse sprang forward at a pace greatly pleasing to the 

Whatever the offending thing was I never knew, but 
the impression of a rope was deeply stamped upon my 

When the mountains were reached and climbed for a 
time the horse which had brought me safely through the 
jungle was exchanged for the one which had fallen. That 
horse was a good climber, but he turned another somer- 
sault and dislocated my wrist. 



I was making a lone trip from Guadalajara to Tepic, in 
Mexico. As usual, I was on the trail at night. I believed 
it was safer- to travel at night than in the day because if 
bandits should hear me coming they would not suspect that 
a lone stranger would be traveling at that hour. They 
would think I was proceeding others and would allow me 
to pass with a view of getting those who might be in my 
wake if not in superior numbers. At any rate, that was 
my view of things, and I did much riding at night, not- 
withstanding I was frequently admonished, to discontinue 
it. General Del Toro, a Federal General, once said to me: 

"Doctor, I want to make a request of you." 

"All right, General. What is it?" 

"I want to ask you, if not for my sake, for God's sake 
to stop riding around this country alone as you do. There 
are hundreds of men here, in fact, you see men every day 
of your life who are gonig to kill you at the very first 


opportunity if for nothing more than to say, 'I killed a 
Gringo who was not afraid to ride around by himself.' " 

The term "Gringo" is applied to Americans by Mexi- 
cans in derision. They do not know that the word means 
any person in a foreign country the language of which he 
cannot speak. A Mexican is a Gringo in the United States 
if he cannot speak English. 

As straws show which way the wind blows, the Gen- 
eral's simple request shows the bent of the Mexican mind. 
He knew his people. He knew that many consider it a 
Christian duty to kill an American; that is, if there is no 
chance of himself being injured at the time. He well 
knows if he escapes he will never be sought, caught or 
prosecuted by Mexicans. 

I started on the journey to Tepic at the hour of mid- 
night. . I had not gone far from the village at which I had 
passed the first part of the first night out, when I saw 
a crowd of men in the road in front of me. They appeared 
to be engaged in earnest conversation, as they were rather 
closely grouped. I could see clearly that they were men 
and that some of them had dismounted, but I could not 
distinguish their habiliments, so could not determine 
whether they were bandits or not. As it was rare for a 
band of men to be out at that hour of the night, unless for 
dire or devilish work, I believed they were bandits. I was 
prepared for emergencies. It was my custom to be ready, 
especially when traveling at night. My gun was loaded 
and laid across my lap. I raised the gun in front of me, 
placed my finger on the trigger and moved slowly on, 
watching every movement of the men as best I could. I 
bore to the right of them, so that in passing I would have 
the muzzle of my gun pointing in their direction. When 
I was within thirty feet of them I discovered they were 
teamsters of a wagon train. The front wheel of the fore- 
most wagon had fallen into a hole and the teamsters had 
all advanced their mules that their combined strength 
might extricate the wheel and allow the wagon to proceed. 

I passed on by the wagons and just at the dawn of day 
I saw a long line of Mexican grass shacks along the side 
of the road. It is a common thing to see such shacks bor- 
dering the roads in the suburbs of the towns. I stopped 
my horse as still as possible that I might be certain I was 
not mistaken; that I was not dreaming. The houses were 
certainly moving. But houses cannot move, so they were 


not houses. If not houses, what under heaven could they 
be? I began to fear I had "bats in my garret" and was 
seeing things. I thought of Don Quixote de la Mancha, 
the windmill, the herd of sheep, the dishpan helmets and 
many other things equally as extravagant, and I was in- 
deed puzzled. While in this distracted mental attitude the 
things came nearer, and I could see that they had legs and 
were walking. Thus the mystery was solved. Great stacks 
of hay had been bound about the bodies of mules, as only 
Mexicans can do, and the only parts of the animals which 
could be seen were their legs and feet. 



I arranged a pack train at Chihuahua, Mexico, and went 
across the Sierra Madre Mountains toward Topolobampo, 
on the Gulf of California. My sole companion was an 
Indian guide with whom I could not converse, as neither 
of us could speak the language of the other. We camped 
alone every night in the desolate fastnesses of the moun- 
tains or in the suburbs or center of the towns. 

The days were passed in admiration of the beauty of 
the scenery and the nights in blissful slumber disturbed 
only by the rain and the cry of a wolf, the scream of a 
panther or a Mexican lion. The trail was narrow, tortuous 
and dangerous. At times it passed through belts of mag- 
nificent tall pine timber and at others through a vastly 
varying underbrush. 

The first night was spent in a sparsely timbered sec- 
tion, without house or tent. The sky was clear, the 
weather cool, and everything indicated a pleasant night 
and an early start in the morning. But the scene changed. 
By midnight it had grown cold and was raining. Not like 
a waterspout, but just one of those steady, searching rains 
which sink deeply into everything and finds ones very 

The moon and stars were gone and blackest darkness 
surrounded the mules, which had been allowed to wander 
in search of grass for their supper. Grass was all they 
had, and all they would get throughout the entire journey. 

The rain was so annoying the Indian rekindled the fire 
at about two o'clock in the morning. Everything was wet, 


and could be no worse if moving along the trail, so I de- 
cided to move on. I sent the Indian after the mules, and 
after a two hours' search he returned without them. He 
was given food and sent back to the search with instruc- 
tions, pantomimically given, not to return without them. 
Without a word the man wrapped himself in his blanket 
and drew it across his mouth as was the Indian custom 
and disappeared in the darkness. 

Many and weird were my thoughts as I sat upon my 
wet trunk in a cold rain at the dead of night, alone in a 
foreign country, in a section inhabited only by wild beasts. 

Would the Indian find the mules ? Would he find them 
and drive them away, never returning, unless with some 
old pals to rob or do worse? But what nonsense to worry 
about such things! What is coming will come. What is 
yours you will get. In this life one has to accept what 
comes one's way, and it is puerile to wish such things as 
have already happened were otherwise. Does a zebra 
regulate the stripes of his hide ? Is he not born that way ? 
Does any man regulate the color of his eyes, or his form? 
Are orators, singers, violinists, pianists, Edisons or Fords 
born, or are they made? Could any of these successful 
men make a success of any other calling ? I do not believe 
they could. Could anyone make a world's champion chess 
player out of an imbecile? Did the blind imbecile, negro 
boy "Tom," make himself one of the greatest piano players 
in the world at seven years of age by practice? Could 
Christ have escaped his death on the cross? I think not. 

I was a strong believer in the statement of the Koran 
that "There is a fatality hung about every man's neck," 
so I had no fear; nevertheless the hours, under the circum- 
stances, were long and dreary. The rain continued to fall, 
not heavily but continuously. Just that tantalizing, driz- 
zling rain that the Bible has likened unto a contentious 

When the hour of ten in the morning had arrived I had 
lost all hope of seeing my Indian or my mules again, and 
was planning to walk back to the railroad. I rose to my 
feet in contemplation of the situation and I heard the 
usual Mexican words of persuasion applied to mules, "An- 
derle Cabrones !" so in less than half an hour I was on the 
trail again. The rain continued four days and nights. We 
cooked and ate and slept in the rain. The nights were 
spent in wet bjankets and the days in wet clothes. 


On the morning of the fifth day when I had about come 
to the conclusion the rain would never cease, the sun burst 
forth suddenly and shone in all the effulgence of its glory. 
It drove away the few specks of cloud that were loath to 
leave the firmament and filled all space with transcendent 
radiance. It infused new life into everything. The ani- 
mals stepped lighter and lifted their feet as though tread- 
ing in midair. They stretched their necks to full length 
and di ] ated every nostril as though to draw in the glory 
of the hour. The few birds of the mountains chirped with 
gladness and flitted from bough to bough as they vied in 
cheerful song. The trees seemed to unfold every fiber and 
spread their drooping branches to catch every ray that 
sprang from the shining sun. 

The Indian had complained of the slowness of the mules, 
but now they were willing to go; but being of flesh and 
blood, they grew tired after a few days more of travel and 
it seemed necessary to exchange them for others. When 
the town of Choix, in the State of Sinaloa, was reached a 
definite arrangement was made with a Mexican for large, 
strong mules, as no others could carry my baggage. The 
mules were to be ready for a start at eight o'clock a. m. of 
the following day and were to reach the town of Fuerte 
by eight in the afternoon, the hour at which a train would 
leave for the gulf coast. 

At the appointed hour there were neither man nor 
mules in sight. At an hour so late it was impossible for 
the man to fulfill his obligations he appeared with a lot of 
little, ratty mules, thoroughly inadequate, and they were 
of course rejected. The Mexican claimed he had been 
badly treated and demanded one-half of the agreed price 
of the journey for his trouble and loss of time. Upon 
refusal to be bled by the Mexican, he went away in search 
of a policeman, swearing he would have me placed in jail 
if I did not pay the amount demanded. Instead of a police- 
man, the fellow returned with a Judge. They had planned 
a private court trial in the street. The Judge investigated 
a little, and told me I would have to pay the bill. But I did 
not agree with the Judge. I knew I was in the right and 
I had the courage of my convictions. 

"I am entirely in your power," said I to the Judge. 
"You are in authority here and may do as you like, but 
I will never pay that man's bill." 


"How much, then, will you give to settle the matter ?" 
asked the Judge. 

"Never a cent will I pay. If either of us is injured, I 
am. I have been delayed in my journey and will lose 
money. That man will not. I know you can put me in 
your jail if you like, but I promise you I will rot there be- 
fore I will pay that man one cent." 

The bluff worked. There was a hasty conference be- 
tween the would-be robbers and they went away, going in 
different directions. They left me standing alone in the 
street, and one more effort to bleed a "Grngo" was 

The journey was continued with the original mules, but 
progress was slow. During the afternoon I was strongly 
attracted by bushes laden with beautiful red berries. The 
sight of the fruit tempted me, and increased my fruit 
appetite, which had not been gratified for many days. By 
means of signs I asked the guide if the berries were good 
for food. The reply was in the affirmative, but I would 
not risk eating an unknown fruit until I had induced the 
guide to eat of it first, but the guide either did not eat 
what he placed in his mouth or I indulged too freely, be- 
cause in a brief space of time I became deathly sick. I 
could scarcely sit upon my mule, but the guide sauntered 
along behind me singing in a tone which indicated happi- 
ness, but sounded as though a great way off. 

A peculiar sense of nervous excitement stole over my 
entire frame. I dismounted, laid down upon the ground 
and wished for a stomach pump. I could not vomit. Even 
a bunch of hair from the mule's tail in my throat failed to 
bring back the berries. The poison was being absorbed 
into my system. I knew it well, but could not prevent it. 
I spent the remainder of the afternoon between the ground 
and the saddle, and was forced to go into camp at an early 
hour. I retired with scarcely strength to remove my 
dothing, and the guide had to remove my boots. I was 
dizzy and weak. My flesh tingled, my muscles cramped 
and my breath came quick and short. My head was hot 
and my eyes seemed to protrude from their sockets. My 
temples throbbed and with a bounding pulse my feet and 
hands were cold. I knew I was undergoing a radical 
change, but was free from pain. I felt assured I was go- 
ing to die, but I feared nothing. 

It seemed death would be no more than the changing 


of an old suit of clothes for a new suit. There are regrets 
at parting with an old suit which has adjusted itself to 
the kinks and knots of one's frame, and there are pleas- 
ures in the wearing of the new. As a new suit adjusts 
itself to one's frame and becomes comfortable, just so I 
believed it would be with the new state into which I was 
about to pass. The end seemed near at hand, and with a 
conscience clear I awaited the call to the judgment bar. 

A drowning man, after the first pang of pain caused 
by water entering the lung, realizes he is dying, but it too 
comfortable to wish to return. Just so it was with me. 
I felt that I was passing away ; that I was losing conscious- 
ness, and I did. Without a twinge of regret I passed from 
the scenes of this life into that state unknown to me. In 
an instant I seemed to pass the pearly gate which leads to 
the throne of God. I knew the gate had been opened for 
me, but I could see nothing. All space was of a garish 
brightness. The dazzling light which emanated from the 
throne was so transcendently bright I was totally blinded 
by it. My eyes seemed like large metallic balls heated to 
a white heat, yet they did not burn. I seemed to stand on 
nothing. There was nothing above, below nor around me, 
and the feeling was that of being surrounded in illimitable 
space and a brightness inconceivable. 

While in this condition I heard a voice which pro- 
nounced the word "Doctor" very distinctly. I listened 
intently for a repetition, but it did not come. It seemed 
I had heard the voice while on earth, but I could not place 
it. I realized that I could not speak, but I made a desperate 
effort to respond and my eyes came wide open. The Indian 
guide had called me to say that the sun was shining in 
my face. 

Dame Nature, the best doctor of them all, had come to 
my aid and eliminated the poison from my blood while 
asleep, and I was as well as ever before. 



Instead of pack trains they often use in the level west 
coast section of the Republic of Mexico large carts* with 
wheels made from planks nailed together and sawed round. 
Sometimes the wheels are sawed from the trunks of large 
trees which grow near the coast. These carts are drawn 


by oxen yoked as they were in the days of Christ, and 
they use the same long-shaft wooden plow with one 
handle. The yokes are lashed to the horns with rawhide 
strings and the whip is a sharp metallic-pointed prod. Just 
where Christ left them he would find them today, and they 
seemed destined to remain in this primitive state for a 
long time to come. The motto of the peon is : "What was 
good enough for my father is good enough for me." In 
most things they cannot be induced to change. They are 
infected with the microbes of leisure, pleasure and drink. 
The salvation of that country lies in the abolition of tequila 
distilleries, which furnish a good old drunk for three cents ; 
enforced education, small holdings without a right to sell, 
and a free and full exercise of religious liberty. 

As a rule the average laboring Mexican or peon is not 
under the ban laid upon the man in the Garden of Eden, 
for he never sweats to earn bread. He grows fruits along 
the streams and in the wet season he plants a few beans 
and a little corn. 

The mountain farming is carried on in some places so 
steep that men have been known to attach ropes to their 
bodies to prevent them from falling out of the field. A 
watermelon or a pumpkin would roll until it burst to pieces 
in the Valley below, should it become detached from its 
moorings. The crops require — at least they get, but little 
attention in the form of labor. Peons chop down the 
bushes, make holes in the ground with a crowbar and put 
in the grain. When the corn is about two feet high they 
cut the bushes again with machetes and this completes the 
tilling. They have then only to gather the crop to com- 
plete the year's labor, and the yield is abundant. 

Of course this statement does not apply to the whole 
country, because there are many large and profitable farms 
in the Valleys and more level country, and it is from these 
sections that the great agricultural products of the country 
are produced. The conditions above mentioned apply only 
to the mountainous country, which constitutes an exten- 
sive area. If the mountains of Mexico could be leveled by 
drawing them out to sea, Mexico would be so near to China 
one would be able to see the wooden shoe on the compressed 
foot of the Chinese damsel from the window of the adobe 
shack of the bigotted stiletto bearer. . 

The peon class in Mexico lives in grass, stick, adobe or 
rock houses, according to the circumstances, and a few of 


the rich live as do the poor. Chickens, pigs, dogs and peo- 
ple often occupy the same house and live quite socially 
together. They have so little furniture that when they 
wish to move all they have to do is to call the dog, pour 
water on the fire and go. 

However, Mexico is a rich and wondrous country. It is 
rich in climate, minerals, timber and farm lands. It is 
wondrous in its topography, its height of mountains, its 
depth of canyons, and the peculiar course of its rivers. 
Rivers change bed annually in some places and spread over 
miles of country, while in other places the same river flows 
through canyons so narrow and deep that the sun shines 
upon the water not more than two hours a day. One may 
shoot a deer on the opposite side of a canyon and it would 
spoil before he could reach it. A bird shot dead while fly- 
ing in the mountains may fall so far away it would require 
a whole day to get it. 

The continuous change and grandeur of the scenery in 
the mountains create a natural panorama which is so 
pleasing to the eye the body fails of fatigue. 

The greatest obstacle to travel in that country is the 
scarcity and limited variety of food. Conditions change 
for the better in the level country, but clean, palatable 
food is rare. Sanitation is unknown. There is no dread 
of flies, hence food is seldom protected against them. 
Articles exposed for sale, positively black all day with flies, 
are bought and eaten with the same relish as though fresh 
from the vine or pot. Every home is a separate enclosure, 
in which they use the surface closet and a hog for a scav- 
enger. When the hog is fat they eat him and get another. 
If it was true that man dies when he eats a peck of dirt, 
no peon would live long enough to cut teeth. 

The average peon is like a blanket. He shrinks from 
washing. It is an undeniable fact that many of them go 
for years without taking a bath or washing their faces. 
Even the women, who are much more cleanly than the men, 
refuse to allow water to touch them when they become 
sick, no matter what disease they may be afflicted with. 
They entertain the insane idea that if one washes even his 
hands while ill, recovery is impossible. 




A Mexican "baile" or ball is attended with features 
peculiarly characteristic and differing widely from those 
of any other country. The music is pretty, catchy and 
fills one with enthusiasm for the dance, but it is so fast 
it is almost impossible for one not accustomed to it to 
dance by it. Sometimes two bands play and the music is 
incessant; the one takes up the refrain from the other and 
gives the other a time to rest. When a couple wishes to 
talk, or rest from the dance, they just cease dancing and 
walk around the floor in the direction the dancers go. 
When they care to do so they join in the dance again. In 
this way a couple may remain together throughout the 
entire evening, and the only comment will be that they 
are "Novias," which means "Sweethearts." No one will 
interrupt a couple while upon the floor, so one is safe from 
molestation by other fellows as long as one can keep his 
girl from sitting down. No man cares for the no via of 
another man, if the other man is around. 

The most pronounced feature of a baile is the drinking. 
There is no ball without a bar, and a bountiful supply of 
things to drink are always on hand. That statement is 
true so far as an experience of ten years on the west coast 
of Mexico can testify. 

In the border towns things are different. Their inhab- 
itants are more Americanized. 

A grand carnival ball was given at the Governor's Pal- 
ace and I attended it by invitation. The ballroom was 
large, brilliantly illuminated and gorgeously decorated. 
Palms were everywhere and vines hung in festoons of rare 
design, the whole being interspersed with electric lights 
of varied colors and form. The cardinal feature of the 
decoration was a display of the national colors, and the red, 
white and green were so artistically interwoven as to pre- 
sent a scene free from fault. The music was entrancing. 
The women were handsome; some were beautiful — thanks 
to the three "P's" — paint, powder and perfume. The men 
were^ stylishly dressed and seemed as courteous as men 
could be. 

At ten o'clock the dance began and all went well until 
about the hour of midnight. At that hour many were 
drunk. And why should they not be? There were three 


well-regulated places supplying drinks of every kind and 
several men served at each place. Besides this, there were 
men who took trays with glasses and bottles all around the 
room and insisted that everyone should drink. They mixed 
drinks, the strong with the weak, and brandy straight went 
down female throats with as little discomfort as attends 
water in a rain barrel. Soon many were incapacitated for 
the dance, and at the daylight hour some were seen wab- 
bling in the streets as gracefully as an empty bottle in 
a whirlpool. 

At a ball in the town of Mocorito I was presented to a 
novia by her own request, she having expressed a desire 
to dance with me. I declined at first, but being of a mind 
to try anything once, I danced with the girl. When she 
arose to join me her "Novio," who was sitting with the 
family, told me to bring her back to him when I was 
through with her. When we had made one round of the 
floor, the novio, valiant fellow, met us with a cocked pistol 
in his hand, which he had obtained from the cloak room, 
but it was taken from him by force before he had an oppor- 
tunity to use it. Who he intended to shoot may be inferred 
from the fact that on the following morning I was told the 
fellow had followed me to my room in the hotel with a large 
machete in his hand. 

The peons have neither wood, brick nor cement floors 
to dance upon, so they dance upon the ground, often under 
brush arbors. As is the case with the higher classes, drink- 
ing is the main feature of the dance. 

A dance was given to the workmen of a mine and there 
was no place for giving our drinks, so men walked through 
the grounds with demijohns of mescal, a famous native 
drink, under their left arms and funnels in their right 
hands. They put the funnels in the mouths of men and 
women and poured in what they thought right for the 
time. They began the dance early in the evening, and be- 
fore midnight everybody was drunk, many had been 
knocked down, and the dance was over. Those who were 
not asleep upon the ground were rambling in the streets 
like so many boats without rudders. 

It is necessary to obtain a license to give a dance, even 
in one's own home, in Mexico. There is a twofold object 
in it — revenue for the mayor and protection for the people. 
A part of the money is paid to extra policemen to protect 
the dancers against themselves. This sounds preposterous 


to one uninitiated, but it is well understood by those who 
have attended dances in the interior of Mexico. 

I attended a dance given to the mediocre at a village 
in the State of Durango. It was a small town in the moun- 
tains on the Fuerte River. I rode several miles on mule- 
back and crossed the river in a boat. I had been invited 
to dinner and the dance was to be a surprise. On account of 
this I did not take thin shoes — things very~necessary to my 
comfort at a dance. A dress suit would have been as much 
out of place as hair on a billiard ball. I telephoned for my 
pumps, but when they reached the river it had risen and 
was flowing with so strong a current no boat could live 
in it. The party who had given the dance was little less 
than a King in that section of the country. He had re- 
cently sold a mine for two hundred thousand dollars and 
was liberal in the use of his money. It was he who had 
given the baile at which the demijohns figured so con- 
spicuously. The little King ordered a peon to swim the 
river for the shoes. I plead against such hazard, but it 
was of no avail. The order had been issued and must be 
obeyed. The man's order was as the mandate of the Pope. 

The peon secured a piece of log about six feet long, 
bored a hole near the end of it and drove a peg into the 
hole. Holding to that peg he jumped into the river and 
in less than an hour the pumps were upon my feet, which 
were moving to the sweet strains of music from a good 
Mexican band. 

The entertainment was continued three days and nights. 
Dancing and drinking were the features of the occasion, as 
usual, but the table must not be forgotten. It was laden 
with the best of everything obtainable in the country, and 
there was a large crowd to enjoy it. Everything was ele- 
gant. The purest of silverware, beautiful cut glass and 
the finest foreign China. There were rich napkins of 
exquisite drawnwork, but they were neither changed nor 
laundered during the three days of entertainment. After 
each meal they were gathered in a large basket and just 
before each meal they were distributed around the table. 
One may have gotten the same napkin twice, but if he did 
it was not known. This is a custom peculiarly Mexican. 

As has been said, nearly everybody drinks on the west 
coast of Mexico, and it is no disgrace to get drunk, no mat- 
ter what circle of society one moves in. 

Music and mescal are the usual means of announcing 


success in that country. When a man has made an un- 
usual deal in any line of business he employs a band, gets 
drunk and strolls from grog shop to grog shop spending his 
money freely. He treats everyone who will drink with him 
and he usually gathers a large crowd of followers. He 
continues the orgy, day and night, as long as he can pos- 
sibly hold up, and then he lies down to sleep off the alcohol 
and dream of happiness to come. 



Mexican society is divided into three distinct classes — 
first, second and third; and the lines between these three 
classes are as distinctly drawn as they are between the 
rich, the common people and the negro in the United States. 

There are in Mexico persons as highly educated, pol- 
ished, refined and pure as can be encountered in any quar- 
ter of the globe, but they are few, very few in comparison 
to the great horde of Spanish-Aztec mixtures, which con- 
stitutes the great bulk of the population. The peculiar 
customs of this mixed blood people pervade the whole 
social atmosphere. 

In Mexico no two persons of opposite sex ever have an 
opportunity of conversing unheard by others, except on 
a ballroom floor or clandestinely. No mother will allow 
her daughter, or any girl under her protection, to be alone 
with a man, no matter who he is, unless he is her father 
or brother. There must be a chaperone, and sometimes 
several of them. For instance: When I first went to 
Mexico I invited a young lady to attend the theater with 
me. She accepted the invitation and when I called for her 
I found her mother and several brothers and sisters all 
dressed and waiting. Instead of a couple of seats I had 
to buy a box, and it was well filled. I never made that 
mistake again. 

Every habitation is a fort, with one entrance. Fowl, 
beast, provender and the people all enter and leave through 
the same door. Every residence resembles a jail. Every 
window is grated with heavy iron bars and it is through 
these grated windows that the young folks do their court- 
ing. The construction of the houses speak louder than 
words as evidence of the absolute lack of confidence Mexi- 
cans have in each other. Well, they know each other best. 


Every town, even those of but a few hundred inhabit- 
ants, has a public plaza, and everybody goes to the plaza 
on Thursday night, Sunday afternoon and Sunday night 
of every week. They go for exercise, and to see and be 
seen. It is there they splurge in all their finery, paint, 
perfume and powder. A girl seen on the next day without 
her artificial plumage would not be recognized. All men, 
except when accompanied by a lady, walk around the plaza 
in one direction and the women in another. In this way 
the sexes are brought face to face. 

When a man sees a girl who strikes his fancy he learns 
who she is and locates her home. Then he will go day 
after day and walk in front of her house, or hang himself 
up against the wall on the opposite side of the street for 
hours each day and gaze at her as she sits in the window 
observing what goes on in the street. It is a time-honored 
custom to sit in the window, as the residences are built up 
to the sidewalk just as the business houses are, and there 
are no porches. 

After many days of patient watching and waiting for 
some sign of recognition, and failing to get it, the young 
man gives up in disgust and goes away. In case he is 
recognized he goes over to the window, introduces himself 
and engages the girl in conversation. He stands upon the 
outside and "plays bear" with the girl behind the bars. 
No young man is permitted to visit a girl in any other way, 
and there is always some one besides the girl, though us- 
ually out of sight, to hear what the man says. It is a sad 
commentary on conditions, but it is a warm country and 
the climatic influences may justify the precaution. 

If the girl at the bars accepts the man's proposition to 
marry, he will send a committee of friends to the father 
to ask his permission. Then comes a long, weary wait, for 
it is considered vulgar to reply promptly, and many times 
the father's decision is not known for months. If they 
agree to live together without marrying, she will leave the 
place clandestinely and go to him. If the father's reply is 
in the affirmative the suitor is allowed to enter the house, 
but he never sees the girl alone until after the marriage 
ceremony is performed. 

In a great measure a woman's pleasure ceases when she 
marries, because she is buried in the tomb of her own home 
and subjected to a jealous surveillance which is as con- 
tinuous as it is painful. Divorces are not given in Mexico 


except for one cause, but those who do not marry often 

A woman will not speak to a man first, even after he 
has been presented to her. She will stare him out of coun- 
tenance on the street or anywhere else, but the man must 
speak first. Mexican society is indeed unique. I once 
asked a man at a dance if a certain other man was not 
related to him. 

"Yes," was the prompt reply. "And we have the same 
mother and the same father, too." But he did not confess 
that there were half brothers, from both sides of the house. 

A great many of the parents of large families are not 
married. They simply live together and raise bastards, 
and the bastards move in the best of society, if they have 

To be really and fully married in Mexico one must be 
married twice to the same woman. Religion and State were 
supposed to have been separated by Benito Juarez, but it 
is not so in practice. A priest will not marry a Catholic 
to a Protestant without a special dispensation, and if there 
is any way to avoid it he will. The church does not recog- 
nize a civil marriage, nor does a church marriage alone 
without a license satisfy the law. 

According to the Roman Cathlic Church every man and 
woman who is not united in marriage by a priest is living 
in adultery, and their children are bastards. 

It is true, ceremony cannot bind hearts. If not bound 
by God the binding will rust. No law can compel a man to 
live with a woman if he does not wish to, nor a woman to 
live with a man if she does not choose to do so; nor can 
any law, which does not deprive one of liberty, keep man 
and woman apart if they both clesire otherwise. 

It is love that binds in happiness. It is love which 
causes one never to tire of those small things so often neg- 
lected because they are small, yet which are as necessary 
to happiness as existence itself. These small courtesies 
blunt the thorns of human existence. They soften the 
nature of recipient and donor, and weave cords of love 
which bind like chains of hardened steel. They are like 
condiments to a tasteless meal, and are stronger links in 
affection's chain than greater acts. They fix the respect 
of man, a thing far more difficult to retain than to gain. 

Love comes but once to every soul and is a creation of 
God. It is incorruptible and indestructible. Once the 


genuine flame is kindled, it never ceases to burn. Neither 
fire, wind nor wave can affect it. It is as endless as the 
cycle of the earth. It is a fixture within one's brain and 
breathes in consonance with every pulsation of the heart. 
It is an electric union of souls and the current flows from 
soul to soul throughout all time, no matter how widely 
they may be separated. 

Fascination is a very different thing and comes fre- 
quently to one. It is of the earth and emanates from the 
carnal nature of man. It is destructible, deceptive, and 
leads man astray. Man is like a ship that weathers many 
a storm and goes down in one less severe. The power is 
not given man to resist temptation with equal force at all 
times. Fascination exists for a time, apparently as strong 
as love, but it will inevitably vanish like snow under a 
noonday's sun. Those linked together by mere fancy are 
to be pitied. A distinction between the two states, love 
and fascination, is often extremely difficult, and one may 
be mistaken for a time, but the truth will out. It is rea- 
sonably certain that a man who really loves a woman, and 
desires her for a life companion and the mother of his 
children, will have too much respect for her to lead her 
into any conditions where cruel criticism will be the least 
of her rewards. He would shield her good name as he 
would her life. "Kill my dog, but do not give him a bad 
name." A woman should be constantly on her guard. The 
first insinuation of familiarity by a man should be met 
with a slap in the face, or a parting of the ways. If he 
really loves he will return, but if not he will cease from 
following after her, and her loss will be her gain. 

The continuance of an early love is the only hope of 
real happiness to an old man. Women usually are fond of 
children, and old men of young men, but no one cares for 
an old man who feels the weight of years. 

While woman causes many a man to lose his equanimity, 
it is particularly so in Mexico. No man's life is safe if he 
receives marked courtesy from a man's wife or sweetheart. 
All along the public highways in Mexico there are rock 
piles which mark spots where men were made to yield up 
the ghost, and almost invariably from jealousy, that child 
of distrust. As it is the exception which makes the rule, 
there are exceptions to this rule, but they are few. 

A lawyer who was at one time a Judge, and resided in 
Culiacan, quite near my hospital, was out riding with me. 


We came to a rock pile and I referred to it. 

"I wonder who killed that fellow?" 

"I killed him," said the lawyer. 

"Why 'did you do it?" 

"That fellow was a robber and we had him in jail in 
the village of Culiacancita. One night we went down and 
took him out. He asked why this was done at night. I told 
him it was cooler traveling back to the city of Culiacan at 
night. When we reached this spot he said it was no use 
to go any farther if we were going to kill him. I agreed 
with him, and he was stood up against that fence and I shot 
him. I killed fourteen while I was Judge." 

I knew of many a man being killed in Mexico, but no 
attempt at murder was ever made if there was any possi- 
bility of defense. Open combat is never known there. Did 
the reader ever think of the bravery of a man who shoots 
another when his hands are tied behind his back? Of 
such is Mexico. 




Upon the day American soldiers landed in Vera Cruz 
in 1914 a veritable hell was created in Mexico for Ameri- 
cans. The naturally murderous blood of the Mexicans was 
fired to a high point, and it is a wonder Americans were 
not massacred. Many of my personal acquaintances were 
butchered like rats, just because they were American's 
President Wilson's opinion that President Huerta, the man 
who prevented wholesale murder of Americans, was an 
usurper and must be suppressed, brought about the taking 
of Vera Cruz, which proved a farcical and costly episode. 

I was in Guadalajara at the time of that deplorable 
event. Immediately circulars were spread over the west 
coast country which stated that Mexico was actually at 
war with the United States ; that every town on the border 
had been captured except El Paso; that the prisoners at 
Fort Bliss had killed eight hundred American soldiers, and 
that with the arms and ammunition of the dead they were 
marching upon El Paso, which would inevitably fall; that 
Villa had united with Velasco, and that one hundred and 
fifty thousand Mexican braves were tramping over Ameri- 


can soil and the cowardly Americans were running like 
dogs. "God was with Mexico and she would win." 

As I walked along the street I overheard conversations 
in which men were urged to shoot me. "Now is a good 
time to begin, shoot that fellow," they said. Men cried 
wildly that "Every American man, woman and child should 
be placed in the penitentiary and blown to hell with dyna- 
mite the moment a Mexican was injured in the States." 
Americans were forced from carriages and the drivers 
threatened with death if they took them in again. 

Danger grew so imminent the Americans housed in the 
Cosmopolitan Hotel in Guadalajara. Attempts were made 
to overcome them and abuses continued until Mr. Percy 
Holmes, the British Consul, urged all Americans to come 
to the British Consulate for protection, as there was no 
safety for them anywhere else. They accepted the invita- 
tion and there was never another demonstration against 
them while there. What a stimulant it was to American 
patriotism to see the American Consul and his people 
trembling under protection of the British flag. Great 
Britain enforces respect for her subjects. 

Through the influence of the British Consul the Gov- 
ernor of the State permitted a train to take the Americans 
to the port of Manzanillo, where they might find means of 
escape from the country. The use of the train was only 
granted under the guarantee that American soldiers would 
not return to Guadalajara in it. The Governor thought as 
did the Americans, that soldiers had been or would be 
landed at every port of Mexico. 

Before the train was out of sight of the city of Guada- 
lajara the Americans were adroitly divested of their be- 
longings, without any suspicion of what was really being 
accomplished. Men in the uniform of Mexican army offi- 
cers entered coach and coach and said to each passenger as 
they approached him or her: 

"We have been placed here that no harm may befall 
you, and we have been ordered for your protection to take 
up your valuables, give you a receipt for them and return 
them when you reach Manzanillo." They told me they 
were out of receipts, but would hand me one in a few mo- 
ments, but I never saw it. Neither receipts, valuables nor 
those officers ever reached Manzanillo. As soon as the 
process of military skinning was over the train was stopped 
and the officers and plunder disappeared in automobiles 


which were in waiting, and it was not until then that the 
Americans began to look wise and lament. It was one of 
those foxy tricks so frequently played in Mexico. 

The train made its next stop in the town of Chacualco. 
A howling mob had gathered and the Americans were 
greeted with a whirlwind of the vilest abuse capable of 
expression in the Spanish language. The extent of abuse 
was inconceivable and must have been heard and under- 
stood to be believed. Every villainous throat swelled to 
the bursting point with dirty epithets, and the slogan was 
"Dynamite the train! Kill the Gringoes, the cowardly 
Gringoes! Allow no one to escape!" And shower after 
shower of mud, sand and sticks were thrown through the 
train windows. A large American flag was trampled un- 
derfoot, cursed, torn into strips and burned and the ashes 
thrown through the windows of the car. 

When the train reached Manzanillo it was ten o'clock 
of the next morning. The women and children were per- 
mitted to go aboard the German freight ship "Maria," 
which lay in the harbor laden with Chinese men who were 
not permitted the land. 

The men of the American party were placed in a room 
at the wharf, where they were held until six o'clock p. m., 
and they became advised that dynamite was under them, 
in readiness for an explosion in case an American gunboat 
should appear in the harbor. Soldiers, and citizens between 
soldiers with fixed bayonets, frequently appeared at the 
door and abused the Americans in a manner solely deserved 
by the vilest of criminals. They well knew the Americans 
were disarmed and defenseless. It was evident they wished 
to provoke some sort of resentment which could be con- 
strued into an excuse for a holocaust. No American ship 
appeared, so I and my companions were permitted to go 
aboard the ship where the women and children of the party 
were awaiting with much anxiety. 

The Chinese were placed aft of the ship and the Ameri- 
cans were given the forward deck, and they slept in the 
forward hold in suspended canvas bunks. The Americans 
numbered two hundred and fifty-four and the Chinese two 

The ship's supply of food was limited, but she was not 
allowed to replenish even with water. All hands were 
placed on two meals a day at half rations. At meal times 
they were lined up on the deck and the food was passed 


down the line. Each helped himself with his fingers and 
ate with an appetite seldom experienced by man. 

The ship reached San Diego, California, laden with the 
most august body of paupers ever seen, many of whom had 
been worth thousands of dollars. Most of them had lost 
everything they possessed. I had left a handsome array 
of office fixtures, a complete library and instruments suf- 
ficient for all demands. My household and kitchen furni- 
ture was in keeping with the furnishings of the office. I 
had but three hours' notice of the hour to leave, so I locked 
the door of the house and handed the key to one whom I 
had been pleased to call a friend. Some time after reach- 
ing the States I was notified that all of my belongings had 
been stolen or destroyed. 

At San Diego the entire crowd was cared for by the 
Red Cross. Each member of the party was given a ticket 
to whatever point he or she wished to reach, and money 
for food while en route. I went to New York. 

I reached New York City with the hope of obtaining 
employment by some drug house, but there were no open- 
ings. Day after day I tramped the city in search of em- 
ployment, but found none. I had saved a little of the 
expense money given by the Red Cross, and with that I 
was paying for an attic hall room and the little I had to 
eat. I was too proud to accept aid except it be as remu- 
neration for service performed. I had accepted from the 
Red Cross, but that was gathering bread from the waters 
upon which it had been cast. I was as full of ambition as 
any young man, but the realization that I was growing old 
was forced upon me by meeting an old, grey-headed man 
whom I used to know as a gay young swell. From my 
personal feelings I could not judge of my age. I felt as 
young as ever. But the spirit never grows old. It is only 
the flesh that grows weak. One's joints rust out as do 
the hinges of a gate that swings against the vicissitudes 
of time, unless life is terminated by disease. 

Every hope of gaining sufficient funds to establish my- 
self in Florida, where I had a license to practice medicine, 
seemed to vanish like morning mist under a summer's sun. 
But never daunted, I searched with all the more vigor for 
employment, and each night I retired with swollen, aching 
feet from the unusual walking I had done. 

At last a ray of hope came. It was a request from a 
wholesale drug house for a descriptive pamphlet of a new 


combination of medicines they were putting on the market. 

On the evening of which I had spent my last nickle for 
a plate of soup I handed in the manuscript. It was accepted 
and with the money thus gained I reached Brownsville, 
Texas, with fifty cents left in my pocket. There was not 
a soul in the town whom I had ever seen or heard of before. 

My object in going to Brownsville was to recross the 
border and return to Guadalajara, because all avenues of 
support seemed closed to me and I would as soon risk be- 
ing killed in Mexico as starve to death in the United States. 
But I found all communications were severed and reaching 
Guadalajara was an impossibility. 


The average Mexican entertains the idea the United 
States wishes to enevelope his country. American greed, 
so constantly preached into him by the more enlightened 
classes, intensifies his prejudice. He is prejudiced to the 
extent of a deep-dyed hatred which wrangles in his trou- 
bled breast, and is as ineradicable as the propensity of a 
wolf to steal. 

It is believed by many that the root of the difficulty 
lies in the loss of that territory lying east of the Rio 
Grande, a claim to which the Mexican will never renounce. 
He is jealous of the United States because he is inferior 
in education and industry. The country is overshadowed 
by an almost helpless outlook in that they, the majority 
of the inhabitants, being ignorant mixed Indians, do not 
want to improve. 

The average Mexican is a selfish egotist who delights 
in the expression, "I am a Mexican. This is, of course, the 
result of his little learning, which is the father of his ego- 
tism. Egotism is like a certain shell of the sea which is 
only found in shallow water. 

Strange to say, the unfounded idea of American impe- 
rialism has increased, notwithstanding the admanistration 
of President Wilson should have led to the contrary belief. 
Certainly the Wilson policy has shown the United States 
to be the best friend Mexico has today. There were griev- 
ous errors in his dealing with Mexico. His unprecedented 
leniency has increased the Mexican hatred because it has 
been construed into fear, and even a coward hates a coward. 


On many occasions well-educated Mexicans have told me 
the United States would never dare enter war with Mexico 
because she knew too well the victory would be to Mexico. 
Could any other expression stamp a country more forcibly 
with its ignorance? 

The erronious opinion exists that the result of the 
World War has disabused the Mexican mind of the sup- 
posed American fear and impotency. Well, perhaps it has 
to some extent, but the masses in Mexico are not familiar 
with America's part in the World War. It is not a ques- 
tionable statement to assert that a large percentage of 
those who would do the fighting in time of war do not yet 
know there has been a World War. 

The existing revolution and recent revolutions grew 
out of the near state of bondage in which Mexicans, espe- 
cially the lower classes, were held. The foot of diaz had 
been upon the neck of the Mexican more than thirty years. 
The majority were practically slaves to the few. A laborer 
could not leave the man who employed him if he owned 
him anything, and it was sure no hacienda would let a man 
get out of debt as long as he wished to keep him on the 
place. In the cities the peon is a beast of burden. He car- 
ries everything upon his back — pianos, stoves, hay, coffins, 
corpses and everything else. A delivery wagon is a rare 
sight even in a city of an hundred thousand population. 

During the regime of Diaz no one dared open his mouth 
against the Government. If a question was asked about 
anything derogatory to the Government the shrug of a 
shoulder would be the only reply. Any derogatory state- 
ment would result in the disappearance of the man. He 
would be taken to Mexico City and would never be heard 
from again. 

President Madero was a good man. His heart was in 
the right place. But he conceived the idea his people had 
reached a stage of intelligence which would assure their 
being ruled by moral suasion. He was not long in finding 
out his great mistake. 

The Indian nature asserted itself, and the Mexican, who 
is but a part Indian, construed the liberty for which Ma- 
dero fought to be privilege to rob, murder and rape. Bands 
were organized all over the country, consisting of from a 
few to several hundreds, which roved at will and robbed, 
raped, murdered and burned in the name of liberty. 

It is quite safe to assert that between 1910 and 1914 


there was not a ranch or hamlet in the Republic which 
was not sacked either by revolutionists or federals. The 
federals soon adopted the schemes of the rebels and there 
was but little if any difference between them. 

Thousands of foreigners were robbed and hundreds 
killed, particularly Americans and Spaniards. Some were 
butchered because they resisted desecration of their prop- 
erty or person. Many were killed just because they were 
Americans. The Mexican knew there would be no redress. 
He had come to know his acts would be considered "local 
incidents," no matter whether it was the murder of an 
American or the wanton desecration of the American flag. 

The damnable policy of "watchful waiting" cost many 
a good American his life. 



In sheer desperation I crossed the Rio Grande and united 
with the Mexican Army as a Major in the field hospital 
service. I was placed as second in charge of a hospital 
train which carried a guard of eighty mounted men, a 
corps of male and female nurses and spring wagons for 
cross-country work. 

The Villistas, or revolutionists, were in control of Mon- 
terrey, and the railroad had been torn up by them as far 
south as Remones, a distance of thirty miles. It was in 
the territory between Monterrey that the spring wagons 
were used. 

Whenever a night was passed in the country the hos- 
pital caravan was driven into some field and a strong guard 
placed at the gate, but no guard was placed at any other 
point. Anyone could pass in or out just so they did not 
pass through the gate. At the gate signs and countersigns 
were as religiously demanded as though the back and sides 
of the field were guarded by an impenetrable wall. I tried 
to instruct and discipline the guard, but soon abandoned 
the task. I could as easily have taught sheep to sing. 

In every town where a stop was made there was a hos- 
pital established in the Catholic Church and horses were 
stabled in the side rooms. Wounded men were brought 
from the front in ox-wagons, or anything else which could 
be obtained. Many times a day and a night would be occu- 
pied in reaching the hospital, and during that time no sem- 


blance of first aid was given. For this reason, and the 
love of adventure, I went to the firing line and I was the 
means of saving some lives which otherwise might have 
been lost. 



On one occasion there was a little fighting when the 
Colonel, the first in command, was in advance of the hos- 
pital department. He promptly returned, but he did not 
stop at the hospital, not even to say "Follow me!" 

It was certain he believed in safety first. The fight- 
ing continued and the rattle of musketry came nearer and 
nearer. At nightfall a General, who commanded ninety 


men whom he had recruited and for which he had been 
made a General, rode into the little village and commanded 
the Captain of my hospital guard to remain for resistance 
of the Villistas who were coming along behind him. The 
General also told me to get my wounded out of the place 
as quickly as possible. 

In a short space of time the wagons were in line and 
everything was in readiness for the retreat. Every few 
moments a soldier would ride in with a bullet through some 
part of his anatomy and he would be placed in a wagon. 
One who was not wounded rode up to my side as I sat on 
my horse back of the hindmost wagon ready to give the 
order to advance. A sharp crack of a rifle was heard and 
the mount of the man at my side fell dead, and the rider 
rolled under the wagon unharmed. It was thought the 
bullet came from a houstop and was meant to relieve me, 
the "Gringo' doctor, of my military duties, just because 
I was a "Gringo," and the most satisfactory manner of 
getting rid of a man in Mexico is to bury him. 

I ordered a Lieutenant to arrest the perpetrator of the 
deed, but he shrugged his shoulder and said, "Quien sabe 
quien, Major?" ("Who knows who it was, Major?") and 
that was the end of it. 

The order was given to advance and the hospital on 
wheels moved on. The Captain commanding the guard 
must have forgotten the command of the General, because 
he took the guard to the front of the wagons and disap- 
peared with them as quickly as he could. He left me alone 
to fight for the seven wagons of wounded men, if such 
became necessary. The valorous guard was not seen until 
the next day. I rode along with the wounded all night 
and looked after their necessities, notwithstanding I was 
alone and unarmed. 

My Colonel had imagined urgent business at Remones, 
but he did not stop there. He must be a telepathic physi- 
cian and had read Villa's mind, for he crossed over to safer 
ground around Victoria. One thing is certain, I have never 
seen him since. 

The wounded were entrained at Remones and taken to 
the base hospital at Matamoros. There I simply "turned 
them in," without formality of any kind. No written 
orders were ever given me, nor did I ever give any in writ- 
ing. Orders were verbal and often second-handed at that. 

From Matamoros I was never able to return to the 


front ; in fact, there was no front except at the trenches in 
Matamoros. After a lapse of several days the Villistas 
reached the battlegrounds at Matamoros and a fight en- 
sued. The firing from the trenches was continuous dur- 
ing the battle and was continued twelve hours after the 
battle was over and there was nothing to shoot at but the 
air laden with the groans of dying men and horses. This 
procedure is characteristic. Through some mistake, which 
I could never understand, the hospital train was taken up 
to the trenches while the battle was at its height. It made 
a special target for the Villistas and it was promptly per- 
forated by bullets. Twenty-two bullets entered the car 
used by me as an operating room, office and residence. No 
one was injured except Major de la Vega, who was shot 
through the thigh in passing from my car to his own. 

The train was taken back to a place of greater safety, 
but bullets continued to fall all around it. 

While the battle raged I and Charlie Hill, an American 
Captain nurse, went to the trenches on foot. We took 
cover of a long line of freight box cars which had been 
placed on a side track for the protection of the city. Bul- 
lets penetrated the cars from side to side, in front, behind 
and passed above us. Captain Charlie suggested we were 
tempting Providence, but I persuaded him to believe if one 
of those bullets was made' for him he would get it, but if 
not, he might walk to the mouth of the rapid-fire guns 
and not be scratched. There were Captains to spare any- 
way. In the guard of eighty men there were twenty with 
the rank of Captain, sixteen Lieutenants and three Majors. 

When Captain Hill and I reached the trenches a few 
wounded men were found and sent to the hospital in the 
city, as the train hospital had been deserted by all but us 
two. However, sending them was of no special advantage 
because, unknown to me, every doctor in the city of Mata- 
moros, military and otherwise, had fled to the American 
side of the river. 

When night came on Hill and I were the only occupants 
of the hospital train. Hill watched bullets striking around, 
and I lost myself in the pages of "St. Elmo" until midnight, 
when I drew off my boots and slept upon the operating 
table, as was my custom to do. 

All firing ceased before the dawn of the next day, and 
Hill and I went again to the trenches. We crossed over 
the rampart and went among the dead and dying Villistas 


and horses. 

One Villi sta was lying dead within fifty feet of the 
rapid-fire guns, and another man was found fifty feet be- 
yond that point with a bullethole through his thigh. Far- 
ther on the dead were literally piled upon each other where 
they had been mowed down by the rapid-fire guns after 
leaving their horses, which had been held back by a barbed 
wire fence. Those guns did not do the usual Mexican over- 
head shooting. They were said to be manned by trained 

There was no doubt in my mind that the city of Mata- 
moros would have fallen to the foe had there been no wire 
fences. The Villistas were drunk. Mexicans have to be 
drinking to fight that way. A Mexican drunk knows no 
fear. They have said to me, "Give me a bottle of whiskey 
and a rifle and I will march to the cannon's mouth." 

The few living Villistas found were ordered to the city 
hospital, but the suffering horses were killed. A horse 
was groaning piteously and I ordered a soldier to kill it. 
I had given offense to my men by refusing to allow them 
to kill the wounded Villistas, and it may have been for that 
reason the soldiers gun was accidentally ( ?) discharged in 
the direction of my unmailed body. The bullet passed over 
me as I stooped low to the ground upon seeing the soldier 
throwing a cartridge in the rifle with the muzzle pointing 
directly at me. 

The experience gained through my connection with the 
Mexican Army is like the reading of a fairy tale which can 
never be forgotten. Like some ludicrous dream, to think 
of it is to laugh. 

Mexico still needs another Diaz, but there are none. 
Those capable of ruling have been wantonly butchered, or 
driven from the country. Nearly all of the better class of 
Mexicans have either left the Republic or been killed. The 
human sediment has been prodded until it has risen to the 
top and the whole face of the body politic seems hopelessly 

Growing tired of the Mexicans' fruitless, puerile efforts 
to establish a stable government, I recrossed the Rio Grande 
and entered the United States Public Health Service, which 
was transferred by President Wilson to the army estab- 
lishment, and my deepest regret was that I could not trans- 
fer to France. 


Fifty- -Fourth 


I was requested to, and did, read a paper on "Medical 
Ethics" at a meeting of the Southwest Texas District Medi- 
cal Society held in Corpus Christi. 

On going from the hotel to the place of meeting I saw 
several large signs, one of which was a painting of a human 
spinal column. These signs were attracting the attention 
of the public to the wonderful man, commonly known as 
a "Chiro," who was claiming to cure all manner of diseases 
from diphtheria to diplospondulism by certain spinal ma- 
nipulations, these certain spinal manipulations being known 
to all well-informed persons to by physical impossibilities. 

My venturesome nature got the better of me and I 
knocked at the door of the office. It was opened by a man 
about forty years of age who proved to be the "Chiro." 

It was a pleasure to me to see that he was no larger 
than I and that he did not appear to be much of a sprinter, 
so the following colloquy took place: 

"Are you the doctor?" 

"Yes. What can I do for you?" 

"I am troubled with what the doctors call prostate. 
Can you cure me?" 

"I will first have to examine you to find out what your 
troubles are and then I can tell you about the cure." 

"What will the examination cost me?" 

"Nothing at all. We do not charge except for treat- 

"Will you hurt me any in the examination?" 

"Not at all." 

"All right then. Go to it." 

"Strip yourself to the waist." 

I climbed out of my clothing down to the belt and, obey- 
ing a previous order, I sat upon a stool. The "Chiro" got 
behind me and placed his fingers upon the south end of 
my chime. He tickled me like all fun, but I did not dare 
laugh just then. Almost instantly he exclaimed: "Ah, 
here it is ! dislocation, or what we call sublaxation, of the 
last lumbar vertebra. That accounts for the prostate. Now 
we will look a little higher up. Have you never had any 
kidney disease?" "I guess I have, because I often have 
pain in my back, like frea bitings, you know." 

The "Chiro" passed his fingers a little higher up my 


back and exclaimed: "Here it is! A sublaxated dorsal 
vertebra which presses upon the kidney nerve. Now we 
will go on up. Have you had any heart disease ?" 

"I sometimes have palpitation of the heart when I get 
a little nervous. For instance, if I see a fellow who seems 
to be getting the advantage of me in business, or even with 
a girl, my heart flutters." 

"Of course it will! Here is a subluxated cervical ver- 
tebra which controls the action of the heart." 

I thought that was about enough for one man, so I 
stood up. I had been on my feet during the entire preceed- 
ing forty-eight hours and had danced until after midnight, 
and if I could do all of that with three dislocated vertebra I 
was indeed unique. Of course I was sorry for myself, 
though I never had been in better health in my life. But 
I said to him : 

"Doctor, I am in an awfully bad fix. Much worse than 
I thought I was. Can you do anything for me? Can you 

cure me 

"I will be very candid with you, as we always are with 
everybody. We never under any circumstances misrepre- 
sent anything to anyone. I frankly tell you I cannot cure 
you. But I do assure you I can relieve all of the causes of 
your troubles and you will get perfectly well. When I get 
through with you, you will not be well, but your spine will 
be in perfect condition and you will be perfectly well in a 
very short time. You see the bones, by repeated adjust- 
ments, will be made to remain in place and then the dis- 
eases will get well of themselves. Do you know anything 
about the spine?" 

"Not as much as I would like to know, doctor." 

"I will show you," said he. And he brought out a verte- 
bral column and went into a detailed description of sub- 
luxations which seemed clear and wonderful to him but not 
to a man who knew he was attempting to deceive. 

"How much, doctor, will it cost me to get well?" 

"What is your occupation?" 

"Doctor, I was born on a farm." 

"Oh, I thought you were an office man. It will cost 
you twenty-five dollars for twenty-four treatments, taken 
two or three a week." 

"My! Can I get well of all these diseases for twenty- 
five dollars?" 

"Well, you may have to take two courses of treatment." 


"Even that would be great. Think of getting well of 
three such diseases for fifty dollars ! That would be fine." 

"You are right, it would. And there is no reason why 
you should not be well. Do you live in the city?" 

"No, doctor, I live in the country." 

"You may come in any day you like for a treatment. 
You may take one now if you wish." 

"Doctor, I will just think the matter over a little. This 
is so sudden, you know." 

During the latter part of the conversation I was gradu- 
ally leading him over to the door. When I reached it I 
took hold of the knob and expressed my thanks to the fel- 
low for his candor and said to him: 

"There is just one thing more I would say: I have been 
practicing medicine fifty years and this is the first time 
I have had an opportunity to learn for myself what sort 
of damned liars you fellows are." And I walked out of the 
door, leaving Mr. "Chiro" a perfect monument of surprise, 
as fixed to the spot as a cast iron nigger hitch post. 



Quite a lot of mirth was indulged in at the table, by 
short talks and anecdotes by both local and visiting doctors. 
I was called for and after getting off a few jokes on local 
conditions and doctors I requested a full-grown lady and 
a child to stand up by me, and I said: 

"When friends meet around a festive table, 
The time-honored custom, of all who are able, 
Is to delve in hilarity and jest, 
Each with ambition to rival the rest; 
But it is befitting once in awhile 
To indulge in thoughts too grave for a smile. 
So let me divert, a moment or so, 
By references to things you'd all like to know. 
You do not know why you were given birth, 
Nor how long you will remain on this earth; 
From whence you came or whither you go, 
Was never intended that you should know. 
This life is but a narrow stream to span, 
Today you're a child, tomorrow a man; 
is*, 141 

Then the far bank of that stream you must cross, 
And you should do it without any remorse. 
Your works will be writ on the public slate, 
So do no deed unworthy of your state. 
Ere you commit an act, reverse the case, 
And put yourself in the other man's place. 
Yesterday and today and tomorrow, 
Each life will have its full part of sorrow. 
Viewing us three, life's picture you will see 
From which you may learn what your life may be. 
We're a bud, blossom, a full-grown rose. 
I was a bud, blossom, now a fading rose. 
And from that fact, I've reason to suppose, 
The time's not distant when my life will close. 
But ere that occurs, let me impress this, 
Time has taught me the only worldly bliss 
Comes from a thing which every man can do: 
Do to others as you'd have them do to you." 



I ' 

. mm . 


RQ1251BM382 txr T 



R01ES1 5M3A2